15th August 2011

Class Of 2011 Enrol For YLC 2011

15 August 2011

150 enthusiastic 16-19 year olds descended on Bradfield College in Reading today for the start of the National Young Leaders Camp, in which leaders from athletics joined their counterparts from Gymnastics and Netball for 4 days of intensive training and development, focussing on leaderships skills, coaching, officiating and club administration.

Over 500 young leaders have already passed through the programme, which is now into its fourth year. Members were divided into 8 teams, each under the banner of past Summer Olympic Host Cities of Tokyo, Rome, Beijing, Moscow, Los Angeles, Barcelona, Sydney and Athens. The camp also carries the “Inspired by London 2012”mark, which recognises the work the camp does in inspiring young individuals through sport and the various avenues it presents.

“I’ve never been involved in things like this, so I’m looking forward to meeting people who coach and officiate in my sport and others” was how one young athletics official described their thoughts about the week ahead.

As with 2010, graduates from the previous Young Leaders Camp were invited to apply for specific staff roles , including graduate mentors and team leaders. Also amongst the staff cohort were a number of members from the recently formed UKA Youth Advisory Group (YAG).

Graduate of YLC 2010 and UKA YAG member Craig Birch commented,

“It’s good to be back for this year, I feel like I’m still learning anyway, but more importantly, I’m seeing things from a different perspective in my role at the camp as a team leader!”

On the first day of this camp, leaders were challenged with a number of team building activities, fun packed games, energetic exercises, as well as devising a 3 minute showcase of each team’s talent for the “Leaders’ Camp’ Got Talent” show scheduled for later in the week. Kicking off Sunday evening session was an intensive hour session of the dance craze “Zumba”. 

Some of the young leaders reflected on Day one of the camp; 

“This was definitely not what we were expecting or what we’re used to, this is crazy, it’s fun and it’s intense!”

“Definitely pulled out of my comfort zone so far, which is a good thing!”

“I volunteer at my club as much as I can outside of school and other stuff, so I am really looking forward to picking up some other things that can help me get more involved, I’ve got running a club later on in the week so that should be useful”.

The camp aims to give the young leaders a number of skills to take back to the local clubs, schools and networks.

UKA Senior Coordinator, Stuart Attwell, commented “The YLC is now firmly established as a cornerstone of the work that we are doing to support the development of young leaders within athletics. Over the next few days we will be working closely with these committed and talented young people, and hopefully enhancing their knowledge, skills and understanding, in order that they can return to their clubs as more effective leaders.”

The Young Leaders’ Camp runs until Wednesday 17 August 2011, with teams involved in number of sport specific and generic leadership activities and workshops involving event management, mentoring, leading coaching sessions, officiating in sport and personal planning and development.

For more information, please contact Stuart Attwell on sattwell@uka.org.uk / 07912 406497