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Last week, YMCA Awards hosted the second in our series of Vanguard Group receptions in the Houses of Parliament and officially launched our brand new, CIMPSA endorsed, Level 2 Certificate in Gym Instructing, Level 3 Diploma in Personal Training and Level 3 Comined Diploma in Gym Instructing and Personal Training qualifications.

The reception was also an opportunity for us to discuss recent public policy developments with our highest performing clients and sector partners as well as an opportunity to hear some inspirational speeches by politicians from across the political spectrum.

Guest speaker Fabian Hamilton MP, spoke to us about his own health and fitness journey and the capacity for physical activity to help us address many of the societal issues we face today. He also praised our new qualifications and spoke about the need for such innovation within the sector, arguing that, "innovation distinguishes between leaders and followers". Our host Caroline Nokes MP spoke to attendees about her love for the YMCA and the tremendous value of health and fitness for wellbeing, whilst our Group Education and Skills Director, Lady Andrée Deane-Barron highlighted the importance of qualifications being ‘employer-led’ and the benefits of our Y-Mark digital assessment platform. Y-Mark is now available for our new qualifications and can reduce marking time by between 15-20%.

Amongst guests, there were insightful debates about the future of the fitness sector and our new qualifications, with many sighting the importance of firms in the industry looking beyond their immediate commercial interests to their greater social purpose. One of our partners, Sean McCready, Director of Education at ICS Learn said: “I chose to work with the YMCA because they stand for something, they are not just commercial. I also like the way they embrace technology”.

The qualifications’ launch drinks reception was just the second Vanguard Group event, with many more being planned for the future. If you would like more information about the Vanguard Group and its activities please email, or if you are interested in learning more about YMCA Awards please do email us at or call +44 (0)20 7343 1800.