The Prospex Team
Richard Frankland - CEO - known as Beef
Beef was born in 1966 and is married with two teenage daughters. He started his involvement in youth work as a volunteer at the age of 16 when he was involved in the Boys Brigade working with the youngest end and working up the age groups over several years. He became an officer and served in the company he spent time in as a young person which was a fantastic training ground for what was to come. This led to heading up a thriving youth club in Maidstone leading a multitude of activities and residential weekends with young people as well as leading a team of dedicated volunteers. A well as this he also got involved in the Sunday school programme at his local church as a young leader.
Beef left school at 16 without a huge amount of qualifications and landed an apprenticeship as a Carpenter and Joiner with a local builders, where he stayed for 10 years becoming a site manager as soon as his training was complete, and particularly enjoyed training other apprentices. During this time he and his wife were still running the youth club and other projects in the evenings and at weekends.
In 1994 Beef moved to Morden where he trained to become a Youth Pastor studying with Oasis Trust and was placed at Morden Baptist Church where he became the full time Youth Pastor in September 1996 until 2005. During his time at Morden he led the youth programmes as was involved in many of the local schools giving assemblies, PHSE lessons, RE lessons and supporting the schools on residential.
Whilst at Morden Beef led a team of young people on a three week trip to Zimbabwe where they worked with street kids, and in an orphanage, using practical lasting skills. The trip had a huge impact on everyone involved and was truly life-changing.
Beef has also spoken at many youth events including Easter People, New Wine, Substance, and has given Radio interviews on the work of Prospex and related youth issues.
Before working full time for Prospex Beef also taught music in a Hillcross Primary School one day a week for three years, with an emphasis on percussion and leading a Samba band.
Beef has been involved with Prospex in some way or another since it started in 2001 and was part of their first ever residential and led a weekend with young people from Morden decorating a flat on the Bemerton Estate with Prospex for a local resident. It was really that weekend which cemented Beef’s love of the area – something that has not faded. Once leaving Morden Baptist Church, he became more and more involved until he was asked to become Youth Services Manager on June 16th 2008. Matt Calvert, the founder of Prospex, was part of the youth work team Beef led in Maidstone all those years before.
When not working Beef can be found enjoying time with his family, renovating his house, playing music – especially the guitar – and charcoal drawings (a good medium when you are colour blind).
Beef now has over 30 years’ experience of youth work and still has a passion to see young people reach their full potential.
Alan Hopson - Youth Worker
After many years working jobs in plumbing and building merchants and bathroom showrooms a chance encounter with Beef led me to volunteer at a local youth club run by Prospex. From that day forward I was hooked on the idea of youth work.
I continued to work a day job and volunteered in the evenings for two years before being offered some sessional work. This opportunity along with some training made me realise a career in youth work is where I wanted to head. I put myself through an evening course at college whilst working a full time job and evening sessions and juggling daddy duties with m young family, it was certainly a hard and long year, but my persistence paid off and I have now joined the Prospex team on a permanent basis as their Youth Worker.
I love the opportunities working for Prospex has given me and am proud to say I work for an organisation that has such a great reputation in its field. Every day and every session is different from the last and life as a youth worker is never dull. I love working in the local community where I live and helping to inspire youths is so much more rewarding than any other job I have ever had. I will be forever grateful for Beefs passion and drive as it has inspired me to become a better person and pushed me into a career helping others.