Celebrating Young Volunteer Success

3rd July 2019

Students from across Northumberland came together at Close House Golf Club this week to celebrate their involvement in the Northumberland Sport Young Volunteer Leadership Programme.

Nicola Minichiello (World Champion two-women bobsleigh) was the special guest at the evening. Nicola shared her story with the group and was supported by the host Craig Heap.

During the evening students were presented with a variety of awards and given the opportunity to sign up and be part of the Northumberland Sport Young Volunteers team. This team will be deployed to a number of sporting events in the county which will add to their continued personal and skill development.

About the programme

Funded by Sport England the programme started in January 2019 where over 65 young people from 4 different Schools across Northumberland (Ponteland High School, Prudhoe Community High School, Haydon Bridge and Berwick Academy) started their journey on the coaching, leadership and volunteering pathway.   

The pathway has been designed to provide a high quality, inspirational and meaningful experience to the young people involved and help develop skills and competencies that will remain with them for life.  The investment from Sport England enables the young people to support the delivery of the intra and inter elements of the County School Games programme alongside being a key part of the workforce at the County Festival in June.

The programme began at St James’s Park in January, where the young people gained an insight into the principles of volunteering. This session was led by Craig Heap, former Olympian and Commonwealth Gold Medallist. The experience was a fantastic opportunity for the young people to share their initial thoughts and experiences but also learn from each other. To finish the day off the students were given a tour of the stadium where they had their photos taken pitch side and learned about opportunities to volunteer with the NUFC Foundation.

The young people got back together at Northumbria University in March where Sport Lecturers delivered a number of practical based coaching sessions and demonstrated how to deliver fun, engaging and progressive sessions.  This was followed up with a tour of the Sports Central facility to showcase the opportunities available to the young people locally should they wish to follow a career in Sport Coaching or Science.

Supporting the Northumberland School Games

Each school was allocated a role at the Northumberland School Games County Festival and to ensure the young people were competent in their allocated roles they were provided with additional training

  • Haydon Bridge High attended Tag Rugby training at the home of Newcastle Falcons
  • Ponteland High School received Handball officiating training
  • Prudhoe Community High School attended an event volunteers briefing and site visit to learn about the running of the event
  • Berwick Academy were given training to help the delivery of the mini activators session.

Find out more

To find out more about the programme contact Andrew Tunnah, Coaching Manager on 01670 623512 or email atunnah@northumberland.gov.uk

DfE student celebration event
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