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Coca-Cola Enterprises invests in national youth development

29 July 2011

Coca-Cola Enterprises (CCE) has underlined its continued commitment to youth development with the launch of a £750,000 Education Centre at its Sidcup site. The centre is the fourth of its kind in the UK, with similar facilities in Wakefield, Edmonton and East Kilbride in Scotland

As part of CCE’s national education programme, the latest investment is part of the company’s drive to introduce young people to the world of business and enterprise. It aims to host over 200 visits per year, reaching over 4,000 students from local secondary schools, colleges and universities.

The launch was marked with an on-site open day, allowing a range of VIPs including local councilors, national business associations, education groups and teachers from several of the region’s schools to get a first look at the centre.

Pupils from Chislehurst & Sidcup Grammar and Erith School also attended the event, the latter of which taking part in an interactive classroom session to demonstrate the centre in action.

Simon Baldry, Managing Director of Coca-Cola Enterprises (CCE) comments: “We are committed to playing a positive role in the communities in which we operate, and one of the best ways to achieve this is by opening up our factory doors to support the work of educators.

“Our Education Centres offer students valuable insight into the world of business, allowing them to make connections between what they learn in the classroom and real-life modern manufacturing practices. Modules taught at the centre link directly to the national curriculum, and we have built excellent relationships with schools across the country.”

CCE’s fourth national Education Centre has been developed as part its ‘Olympic Games legacy’ programme, located at the Sidcup site which will play a pivotal role in supplying soft drinks to the Olympic park in Stratford for London 2012.

Melanie Leech, Director General of the Food and Drink Federation (FDF) commented: "The Food and Drink Federation is working to attract pupils and graduates into our industry by highlighting the exciting range of careers on offer.

"I'm delighted Coca Cola Enterprises has launched this new resource centre to link into the curriculum and bring to life the range of business and enterprise opportunities that are available in food and drink. I'm sure that it will inspire the science, engineering and product innovators of the future."

CCE’s Education Centres are fully equipped with interactive classrooms and purpose built to deliver a subject related insight into the production process alongside a tour of the factory floor. Each centre is run by a General Teaching Council registered teacher employed directly by CCE, and looks to support the teaching of a variety of subjects, including Business Studies, Science, ICT, Engineering, Design & Technology.

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