These programme notes were written by the Head of the Community Trust, Kevin Thoburn, for Tuesday night's edition of Talk of the Town.
Hard on the heels of the Trust’s Love Luton Culture and Leisure Award last month recognising our work, particularly in local schools, the Trust’s work has again been recognised this time by Bedfordshire Police who have recognised our integration projects in the town by awarding us the 2017 award for Sport Cohesion Champions.
Led by Trust Community Operations Manager, Daniel Douglas, the award recognised our projects that particularly use ‘the power of football to be at the heart of communities’ and recognising the ability of our football club to bring people from different communities together. In particular, the award recognised two projects; the Luton Euros football tournament which involved over 20 schools in Luton, and our Premier league KICKS project, which has three late night football centres in Luton and one in Bedford for local lads on various estates.
These centres offer access for over 200 participants each week to facilities not normally available to them, and the award recognised our work in bringing together groups who normally don’t mix and the contribution they make to stronger cohesion in Luton and Bedford. We have a dedicated group of local coaches who are often out representing the Club way past 11pm during the week, and this award is down to their dedication and they all thoroughly deserve the recognition this award acknowledges.
To find out more about the projects we run you can contact Daniel at the community offices on 01582 737568 or by email on firstname.lastname@example.org
FREE ADULT COURSES AVAILABLE
We have two courses due to start in the next two weeks, both of which offer free sports qualifications for those supporters living in Luton and aged over 19. Our Go Lead Go Stress Free course is a six-week sports course specifically designed to support adults in how to develop and use leadership skills in day to day situations.
It’s a bit of a stress buster using a combination of football, learning and sports leader courses, which we hope will help adults better manage symptoms such as poor sleeping patterns, mood swings, difficulty in finding and keeping work and generally finding it stressful just dealing with everyday life.
These are all sure signs of stress which is now recognised as a form of mental health.
Through a combination of five-a-sides and classroom-based subjects such as communication, what is a leader, working with others, as well as putting it all into practise through improvising and coping strategies, we will use situations that might happen during a game and imagine how we can cope with all of that stress.
And how to deal with everything that happens unexpectedly during games and how to put into practice strategies to deal with the unexpected events that will happen – coping with life and stress is very similar.
COMMUNITY COACHING PROJECT
Our second course will offer 18 free spaces to local adults to learn coaching skills and gain their FA Level 1 Coaching Certificate absolutely free through completing our coaching learning programme. The idea is to train up local community members who can then deliver sports activities to members of our local community and try make a real contribution at local level to the sports provision in Luton.
The Trust now employs around 40 full-time, part-time, apprentice and volunteer staff to deliver an increasing number of social, health and educational projects focusing on our community contribution as a football club through school work with mentoring and educational projects, as well as the increasing social cohesion work being done in some of our more diverse estates.
The type of ‘coaches’ we need for this kind of work don’t need to be budding Mourinhos or a Nathan Jones (although it would help!) – but local people who really care about Luton and the community they live and work in, and who recognise the power of football to be at the heart of all Luton’s communities.
We have inductions over the next two weeks at the stadium so if you would like more information email Daniel at email@example.com
or call the office on 01582 737568.