TAKE A NEW STEP
Funded by WEST MERCIA POLICE AND CRIME COMMISSIONER
WHAT WE HAVE DONE
The Foundation received support from West Mercia Police and Crime Commissioner in 2014 for this project which aimed to use multi-sport and ‘street sport’ activity to engage with young people, and identify those sports they would be interested in, with a view to providing further opportunities for them to participate in these.
The project also aimed to equip teachers with additional tools and ongoing community support, through sport, to address challenging behaviours displayed in school; and to encourage young people’s involvement in positive out of school diversionary activity. The programme also provided opportunities for young people’s personal development and re-investment in their community through volunteering and work experience opportunities.
We established a very positive relationship with the Marches Academy which led to the commencement of a morning programme of activities following the October half term with a cohort of their Year 10 pupils. We also worked with partner organisations to deliver these sessions, and thank them for their contributions to the programme (eg Martial Arts and Oswestry CrossFit). We also worked with the school to provide facilities for the pupils to spend the second half of their day developing woodland and vocational skills in adjoining woodland owned by the Football Club. These sessions were led by staff from the school, to create woodland which could be enjoyed by the local community. Whilst this aspect did not form part of the PCC funded project, it enabled the Foundation to offer a full day’s activity off site for the school pupils, who have designed woodland improvements, created pathways, and cleared areas for the wider community. The morning project (funded by the PCC) comprised the following:
Gym induction/gym session
Health and fitness workshop (participants created their own 5 week plan)
Gym session (created by participants)
Football session (learn to coach theme)
Cross fit Oswestry workshop
Gym session (stretching/recovery)
Football (based on created lesson plans and review session)
Martial arts/Kick boxing session (anger management focus)
Gym session (5 week plan)
Gym session (programme review)
In view of the success of the project, a year 9 group started with us in January 2015. The school also requested that the original Year 10s continue with the programme for a further 6 weeks. During this time, two members of the group requested work experience with the football club, which we were able to accommodate.
As part of the project we worked closely with Energize Telford and Shropshire, and also with the Street Games teams. These partnerships meant we were able to provide the opportunity for all Year 10 pupils in the first cohort to take a Young Sports Leaders qualification (Football Futures), and offered Street Games volunteering opportunities to those who were interested in developing a longer term volunteering relationship with us.
Our community diversionary element of this project commenced at Easter 2015 when the weather started to improve!
We have provided weekly football and multi-sport activities on the Multi-Use Games Area (MUGA) in Oak Street, Oswestry. This is now leading to longer term provision of doorstep multi-sport activities, including football, dodgeball and volleyball, for those aged 14 years plus at The Centre, Oak Street, Oswestry.
We have teamed up with STAR Housing and The Three Parishes Big Local to provide weekly diversionary activities for young people in Gobowen, Weston Rhyn and St Martins. The Police and Crime Commissioner support has meant that young people in each of those villages have access to free multi-sport activities once a week regardless of their ability.
We have also recently received support from the Gobowen, St Martins and Weston Rhyn Local Joint Committee to continue and extend our holiday provision in those villages, with effect from October half term 2015. This will effectively enable us to continue the provision established by the PCC
HAVE WE BEEN EFFECTIVE?
Our support from the Police and Crime Commissioner required us to meet a number of targets. Below is a summary of our progress against those targets:
- Equip teachers, through sport, with additional tools and ongoing community support to address challenging behaviours displayed in school. Each school session was attended by one teacher and one teaching assistant, who both participated in and helped deliver each session.
- Aim to retain 80% of those involved in the school programme for the full 6 week programme, and aim to encourage young people’s involvement in positive out of school diversionary activity. 100% of those participating in the first 6 weeks of activity were retained for the whole programme. All participants identified sporting activities which they would like to be involved with in the longer term, and we worked with the young people and their teachers to link them to appropriate out of school activities/clubs
- Work closely with the safer neighbourhoods policing teams, school based CSO, and police youth inclusion team to maximise effective joint working. We have kept all these teams informed of our activities – the safer neighbourhoods team attended a number of our sessions
- Use multi-sport/’street sport’ activity to engage with young people and identify those sports they would be interested in with a view to securing Sportivate support to resource any new sporting activity not currently provided for. We have secured StreetGames support for a Doorstep Club, in partnership with Shropshire Leisure, at The Centre, Oak Street, Oswesty. We have also received support from the StreetGames team to establish two Girls Only Clubs; one running from The Venue, Park Hall, and one to start shortly in partnership with St Martins School. We have also received support from Shropshire FA to run two FA Mash Up Clubs, and from Energize Telford and Shropshire to establish a multi-sport Satellite Club
- Seek to work with other sports/leisure clubs and providers in and around Oswestry to maximise the offer to young people based on the ‘street sport’ engagement activity. We are working closely with Oswestry Rugby Club to maximise the offer to young people, and are also involved in the recently formed Sport Oswestry group which aims to improve sporting opportunities and bring the sporting community together in Oswestry.
- To mentor and introduce the young people we work with to sports clubs and opportunities within their town or village thereby developing a long term sustainable solution to reducing ASB. Our first cohort of Year 10 young people on the Marches school programme individually identified martial arts, rugby and football as activities they would like to continue.
- Provide opportunities for young people’s personal development and re-investment in their community through:
- Joint working with local young people’s health champions – we continue to work with the young health champions
- Volunteering and Sixth Form coaching programme and qualifications – a Football Futures, young leaders course was provided to the Year 10 cohort.
- Work experience opportunities – we offered work experience placements at The New Saints FC for two of the Year 10 students included in the first cohort on the Marches School Programme.
- Volunteering opportunities – we are encouraging young people to volunteer eg on Match Days. Any volunteers receive the support of the Street Games programme, with resources such as hoodies, opportunities to participate in National Games festivals, etc.