30th January 2024
Group of Coach Core apprentices with the education tutor
Coach Core Sussex apprentices benefit from varied programme of training
A coaching apprenticeship programme designed to encourage young people not in education, employment or training into the Sussex sport and physical activity sector has had a jam-packed and varied few months.
The apprentices on the Coach Core Sussex programme have benefited from face-to-face training sessions learning how to work with people with disabilities, how to embrace child-first coaching, and how to teach street dance.
Nick Chellel, the strategic workforce officer at Active Sussex, said: “After the first Coach Core Sussex cohort we asked for feedback from apprentices and employers, which identified some areas for improvement.
“We took the feedback onboard and implemented changes to the programme, such as more face-to-face education days for apprentices and opportunities to visit other employers.
“We have seen the benefits of these improvements and that they have really made a difference to the programme.
“We have a really strong cohort of apprentices and employers that are helping to transform lives and making a real impact in their communities.
“I’m excited by the plans for the final months of the apprenticeship and for the cohort to take advantage of a number of additional developmental opportunities that will be on offer as part of the programme.”
At the end of November the seven apprentices took part in a Play Their Way workshop, delivered by Active Sussex workforce lead Nick Chellel and Lifetime tutor Hazel O’Donnell.
The session consisted of discussions about child-first coaching and what it meant to them, followed by exploring the Play Their Way campaign and resources.
Apprentices were then able to take part in a practical session where they enjoyed some fun, child-first coaching activities, whilst reflecting on how to incorporate more Voice, Choice and Journey into their activities.
The session finished with apprentices given the opportunity to plan and deliver a child-first coaching activity specifically focusing on one of the key themes: Voice, Choice and Journey.
Dance Hub apprentice Lauren Parrott said: “I really enjoyed the Play their Way workshop delivered by Active Sussex as part of the Coach Core education programme.
“I feel like I already knew it was important to have the sessions based around the child’s needs, but I think this session helped to cement the fact that this is such a powerful way of teaching and gives you the confidence to be able to give the young people in your sessions voice, choice and journey, and then have the knowledge to explain why it is such a beneficial way to run a session.
“I like that we were taught this so early on in our coaching careers as it helps us to embed the practice straight away and then we will have a next generation of coaches whose sessions are much more empowering for the young people and will therefore increase the number of people who enjoy and stay in the world of sport.
“Following this workshop I now get all of my students to write down how they want our sessions to look at the beginning of each half term, I review this and then try my best to base my sessions around their answers.
“I absolutely love this way of teaching and am grateful to have learnt it as part of my apprenticeship.”
The busy autumn term finished before Christmas with a face-to-face partner meeting and education session at employer partner Defiant Sports.
Apprentices and employers received a high quality inclusion CPD training session led by Coach Core graduate Aaron Bishop.
The session aim was to increase confidence and competence to deliver inclusive activities to participants with Special Education Needs and Disabilities (SEND).
This involved theory and opportunities to try inclusive practical activities, such as using blindfolds and wheelchairs.
The first face-to-face education session of 2024 was hosted by Marina Studios, with apprentices taking part in a Street Dance CPD session, led brilliantly by Coach Core lead and mentor Jade Hand and apprentice Lauren Parrott.
Apprentices are now entering the final months of the apprenticeship, planning the delivery of their final projects and preparing for their end-point assessments.
An exciting education programme has been pulled together for between now and April, when this current cohort finishes.
This will include additional development opportunities for apprentices, such as attending the Careers in Sport LIVE event at Selhurst Park and the Active Sussex Network event in March.
Petros Kasimis, apprentice at Sky High Gymnastics & Trampoline Club, said of his apprenticeship so far: “Being part of Coach Core Sussex has been a very fun experience and something I’m getting lots out of.
“I’m developing my skills and I’ve met some very nice people along the way, as well as trying sports and activities I never saw myself do.
“Everyone has been really welcoming and friendly and it has made my experience so much better.”
Active Sussex will be starting to recruit employers for a third Sussex cohort in Spring 2024, with a view to launch the programme in Autumn 2024.
If you are an employer, please get in contact if you’re interested in finding out more about Coach Core in Sussex.
For more information about Coach Core, visit: www.activesussex.org/developing-the-workforce/coaching/coach-core/
Take a look at the Coach Core Impact Report for 2023, here: https://coachcore.org.uk/our-stories/annual-impact-report-2023-published/
For more information about the Play Their Way campaign, visit: www.playtheirway.org/