11 15 2013

London – Leverkusen – Mumbai

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At the end of October 2013, the Queens Park Rangers FC from London and Bayer 04 from Leverkusen successfully kicked off a new social project of the FCSA (Football Club Social Alliance) in Mumbai. It is the first time that the two clubs put forces together to educate young people to become skilled, competent children’s football coaches and role models.

Scort - The Football Club Social Alliance in India 2013-14 - Module 1 (17)

Scort - The Football Club Social Alliance in India 2013-14 - Module 1 (51)

The Young Coaches soak up the new football and coaching skills presented by QPR instructors Daniel Edwards (above), Martino Chevannes (below right), Bayer 04 instructos Peter Quast (below left) and Marco Walter (not shown)

An English-German Co-operation

In December 2012, Queens Park Rangers FC became a member of The Football Club Social Alliance and joined the other member clubs – FC Basel 1893, SV Werder Bremen, Bayer 04 Leverkusen and FK Austria Wien – in their common effort to empower young women and men and inspire some of the most underprivileged children in their communities.

The basic idea of the FCSA is to have at least 2 member clubs working hand in hand during a social project. When Queens Park Rangers FC proposed to get engaged in India, Bayer 04 Leverkusen immediately decided to join. Thus, both Alliance members follow together their mission to educate 33 young people during the upcoming 12 months. The clubs will send professional coaches as well as community workers to Mumbai to run the training programme aiming to equip the participants with football, social as well as life skills.

Inspire young leaders

These skills will strengthen and support the Young Coaches in their work with underprivileged children who are living in Mumbai’s vast slums as well as in remote areas. One of the programme participants is Pujari Parvati, 23 years of age. At the end of module 1, she knew where she wanted to be at the end of this training programme: “I want to be a really, really good coach and change the lives of the girls in my community. I grew up in the slum myself and know what kind of impact the involvement of girls in such sport and girl empowerment activities can have. I experienced it myself.”

Scort - The Football Club Social Alliance in India 2013-14 - Module 1 (134)

Pujari Parvati grasps the opportunity to learn professional skills and methods from the QPR and Bayer 04 instructors

Marco Walter, U11 coach at Bayer 04, and his colleague Peter Quast travelled from Leverkusen to Mumbai to share their coaching methods. Walter specified that it is not about imposing their way. “As experts in teaching football to children, we can certainly show the Young Coaches other perspectives and approaches of working with children. However, we don’t tell them that the German or the English way is the only appropriate method. We rather present them alternative options, give them new impulses and thus provide them with professional, practical support which helps to increase the impact of their valuable work.”

Initial impulse has been given

During the 1st education module from 29 October to 1st November the Young Coaches acquired basic skills in children’s football. After two training days their learning progress was already examined by the QPR and Bayer 04 instructors who made them autonomously organise a children’s football festival. The Young Coaches were pretty excited and bombarded their educators with last questions on how to handle such an event. The instructors offered guidance and removed all doubts. Martino Chevannes, QPR in the Community Trust Manager, explained: “The most challenging during such a festival is to get involved and to make explanations as short as possible so that kids are moving a lot and can enjoy as much playing as possible. But this also comes with experience and practice.”

Scort - The Football Club Social Alliance in India 2013-14 - Module 1 (144)

Scort - The Football Club Social Alliance in India 2013-14 - Module 1 (138)

Young Coaches test and implement their newly acquired skills during a children’s football festival

Daniel Edwards (QPR College Football Academy Director) was satisfied with the outcome of the 1st  module and is looking forward to the continuation of the programme. “It has been a great experience for myself so far but the best about this course is the sustainability of it in terms of that we don’t just come here for one week and then our job is done. No, there is a whole programme with 4 different modules where we get to see them actually develop and you see their progression“. “It is a learning journey for everyone and this has only been module 1. Looking at all the participants you ask yourself how they will be when they get to module 3 or 4”, added Chevannes.

Until module 2 which will be staged in February 2014, the Young Coaches will already start using the acquired knowledge so far. “We left them with some homework and the Young Coaches have to apply their newly learned skills in their communities. They have to send us pictures and reports and we will also stay in touch with our local partners who nominated the Young Coaches to follow up on their development and activities” explains Steve Tharakan, who manages the project on behalf of the Scort Foundation. Thus, the main local partner, the Oscar Foundation, together with further project partners – Leher Foundation, Magic Bus, SOS Children’s Villages Alibaug / Bhopal, Rahee Foundation, Jeet Foundation, Colaba Municipal Secondary School – take a crucial role in supporting the Young Coaches activities. They guarantee that these young leaders successfully manage the start into their career as grassroots football coaches and role models for underprivileged children in their communities.

Pictures from the 1st education module

1 comment to “London – Leverkusen – Mumbai”

  1. [...] Alliance project in Mumbai was successfully kicked-off in October 2013. During the 2nd education module last week, the instructors have now deepened the Young Coaches’ [...]

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