Yarra’s youth kick goals despite border closures

Friday 14 August 2020

 Soccer ball in goal net and lying on grass

Last month three students from Yarra Soccer Pathways attended the annual Cityzens Giving Young Leaders Summit, proving there’s more than one kind of net they can practice their footy skills with.

Back for its sixth year, this week long summit trains young people in leadership and community football coaching. Since beginning in 2014, more than 2,000 young leaders from across the world have been lucky enough to participate.

This year’s event was originally scheduled to be held in Manchester in the United Kingdom, but due to the challenges of coronavirus (COVID-19), it was successfully adapted into a virtual event.

In fact, COVID-19 and its impact on the world became the overall theme of this year’s seminars and workshops, which focused on empowering the young leaders to promote recovery from the pandemic in their communities.

One of our Yarra Soccer Pathways attendees said “I really enjoyed the Youth Summit because it helped me learn new concepts and gain a better understanding. I really hope to participate in a similar activity in the near future”.

Another of our participants stated “I was privileged to be in attendance and connect with other people from other parts of the world, I learnt about how to use the game of soccer as an engagement tool during a pandemic. I would love to attend again”.

Cityzens Giving also allowed the young leaders to meet – albeit virtually – Karen Bardsley, the former England women’s national team goalkeeper, and Micah Richards, former Manchester City FC and England national team footballer – as well as a host of other guest speakers.

Some of the most inspiring insights and skills that Yarra’s young people took away with them was learning about how to be a good leader in uncertain times, incorporating social distancing and other’s wellbeing and safety into the planning of their coaching sessions, and using football as a way to engage with the wider community.

The summit saw 250 young leaders from community football projects in 23 cities around the world come together for a very successful, five days of interactive online training.

For more information head to Manchester City’s website.


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