Using a £750 Jack Petchey Foundation Small Grant, Reaching Higher put on a football tournament for young people and the local community in South Norwood. Reaching Higher is a youth organisation which provides a range of creative and interactive activities for young people to help them develop their skills. The day involved young people playing in the tournament, as well as young volunteers helping to run the event. In particular, Reaching Higher’s team of young leaders took ownership of the fun family activities which included a barbeque, bouncy castle, face painting, and games.
The tournament was a fantastic opportunity for young people to take part in sport in a fun, encouraging environment, whilst making new friends on the day. The community coming together, with young people and adults from a range of backgrounds, in this positive way created a great atmosphere.
The tournament was also an opportunity for Reaching Higher to reach more young people and engage with members of the community who are not yet aware of some of their ongoing projects, such as their football academy and summer scheme. This means that these young people now have improved access to local affordable activities and volunteering opportunities.
The young volunteers enjoyed taking a lead on the family activities, which really added to the atmosphere of the event. They saw the whole process through, from planning the activities, to ordering equipment, and manning the area on the day. Through this, they were able to gain organisational and leadership skills, as well as working together in a team. These are skills that they will be able to add to their CVs as well as being generally useful life skills. The leaders in training set a great example to their younger peers, taking a visibly active role in their community.
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