Following England’s successful summer in Russia now is the perfect time to get involved in the beautiful game!
Aptitude Youth Work, based in Coventry, engage with young people in positive life changing projects which can add value to their life experiences, give them a clear focus while providing stronger direction for a brighter future.
Thanks to a grant of almost £5,000 the organisation is providing fitness sessions for 18 – 30 year olds over a 3-month period, one of those activities is its Youth Football Sessions.
Taking a short walk through Naul’s Mill Park we arrive at the 6-a-side pitches to be greeted by Amritpal and some of his friends:
“The sessions are really well organised and really fun! I’ve been to the first three and they’ve been absolutely brilliant!
“I’ve always had a passion for football, and I’ve always wanted to pursue it. I saw this opportunity and went for it without a blink to be honest!
“We start with a few warm-up drills and then we do a little bit of training, passing, shooting and things like that. It’s only an hour, I wish it was a bit longer but it’s going really well.”
It’s not just his football skills that are improving, the sessions are helping Amritpal off the pitch too:
“We come every week to play some football yeah, but we learn life skills too it’s giving us the opportunity to mix with new people, improving our social skills and confidence.”
Interested in developing his coaching skills and giving back to his community Amritpal works as a Youth Worker for the Belgrade Theatre:
“Working at the Belgrade I’m involved with the youth theatre and I support the young people by assisting in the workshops. I’m currently doing a course, so I can lead the groups myself.
“After the 10-weeks here they’re offering a level 1 training in football coaching which is intriguing, I’ll be looking at that. And I’d be keen to volunteer here if there were any opportunities!”
A mixed sex group, the sessions are free of charge and open to all abilities. Greg, the coach, puts them through their paces as he flicks through his playbook in search of the next drill!
“I’m employed by Aptitude as a football coach and youth worker. It’s about increasing their confidence, improving fitness and having fun.
“I’ve watched them improve week after week. They have been engaged in the sessions and put in 100% effort. We started with improving passing and moving, as the weeks have progressed everyone has improved and I’ve been able to the increase difficulty.
“I really enjoy running the sessions, no session is the same and seeing the benefit it’s making to them is great. I’m also giving something back to the community; that’s always good.
“These kind of projects are really important, they offer something to do for adults or children in the community, that they might not have access to otherwise.”