This year the Kick & Code week was conducted in Cape Town in the Cape Flats and happened somewhat different from previous years Kick & Code Week in Pretoria.
Because of differences between Western Cape National Football Association and South African Football Association SAFA, SAFA licences could not be granted to trainers at the successful completion of the week. We therefore had to improvise swiftly and decided to co-operate with COERVER South Africa – which proved to be very positive. The COERVER technique training method has been developed in the Netherlands. It is a highly detailed approach and suits South African trainers well to enable them to aquire much-needed basic skills in depth. The COERVER training unit is the first part of our educational week.
The second part consisted of life-skills training conducted by myself with specially developed exercises on how to increase creativity, improve self-confidence, concentration, communication among other skills. The 21 trainers attending came from different NGO’s; our Partner NGO GCU Acedemy, OASIS and AMANDLA. All three organisations have a similar approach to us, using sport to engage with children and teenagers to improve personal development and social skills which can make a needed impact for better chances in life.
As a final part of the training week we organised together with trainers the Kick & Code festival. Trainer now had to implement the newly learned content and therefore had the chance to gain very useful first hand experience. The chosen location was in a large Capetown Township, Guguletu, in the AMANDLA Safe Hub. We had planned for 150 children attending but as we already found out previously, it is very hard to judge what will actually happen and so on the day we suddenly had more the 200 children in the Safe Hub. This was a challenge for the trainers and to accomodate everyone we had to improvise and adapt the planned exercises accordingly. It was a real pleasure to see everyone from the different organisations pulling together so well.
The structure of Kick & Code festival is taken from our FFWU United Football Festivals. But in addition to two groups doing exercise units of techinique, game and life-skills training a third group is in the computer lab where SAP-coding coaches introduce children to computer programming. Each session lasts an hour and groups are rotating so everyone has the opportunity to play football for two hours and enjoy an hour on a computer!
To deliver more Kick & Code festivals where more children can learn more programming and coding skills, the next step is now to find a partner with a mobile computer lab. Please keep your fingers crossed!
All in all it was a very positive week in Cape Town where lots of flexibility and great co-operation between the four NGO’s FFWU, GCU, OASIS and AMANDLA and their trainers insured the success – even when plenty of improvisation was necessary. New contacts have been made and knowledge and experiences have been shared – may it continue long into the future!