Experience of a foreign culture tends to take most people out of their comfort zone, even as travelling becomes more commonplace.
Getting around can be hard enough, so can you imagine what it feels like to deliver a training session in a foreign country? That experience is being given to a group of Active Schools volunteers from Fife.
A group of 25 students from Fife Active Schools' Platinum Ambassador programme were selected to travel to Stockholm as part of an initiative to give them the opportunity to experience coaching abroad.
The Sweden trip is funded every year by Erasmus+ and delivered in partnership by AM Sports, SRUC, Fife College and Active Schools. Each Platinum Ambassador is fully funded for their trip, including flights, accommodation and even a daily allowance.
The 2018 trip involved 25 pupils from nine Fife High Schools as well as two students who attended in 2017 and returned as mentors. Pam Colburn, Fife Active Schools Manager, was happy to have provided so many students with such a unique opportunity.
“This is a fantastic opportunity for Ambassadors from Fife to visit another country, examine the practices used by coaches and volunteers in Swedish sport, and gain some knowledge which they can then bring back and use in Scotland,”.
In Sweden, the students had the opportunity to coach up to five sports: basketball, football, rugby, swimming and tennis.
They also had the opportunity to visit a professional football club and meet with Svenska FA, the Swedish Football Association, as well as attending local sporting fixtures and other cultural activities in Stockholm.
Callum Imray, Active Schools Coordinator, is proud of the agenda that has been created for the participating students.
“In partnership with AM Sports Tours and Erasmus+ we are able to offer our young people valuable life skills and experience at a key point in their lives as they prepare to move into work and further education,".
"Our programme is unique to Fife and we are proud to be able to offer such a great opportunity to our senior pupils.’’
The Platinum Ambassador initiative was introduced within the Fife Active Schools programme to create student role models that would support the wider sporting programme across Fife.
The Ambassadors play a key role in the planning and delivery of Active Schools activity within the area and in return gain training and experiences that support them to develop their knowledge and skills in communication, public speaking and project management. It is designed to develop young leaders who can inspire and motivate others to take part in sport and physical activity.
Platinum Ambassadors are also signed up for the Saltire Award, a nationally recognised award for volunteering, as well as a series of other training courses.
Active Schools Coordinator Callum Imray is happy that all of the hard work from the students can be rewarded.
“Active Schools Fife offer an excellent Young Leadership Pathway and the Sweden coaching programme is an excellent reward for our young volunteers.”
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