2008 a record year for Team Durham Community Projects
2008 SAW A record number of Durham University student volunteers participate in community projects through Team Durham Community.
Volunteers are rewarded for their hard work and commitment through opportunities to undertake National Governing Body coaching courses in various sports. These courses can strengthen a C.V. aimed at securing work in the challenging job market.
Central to the departments outreach programme is the Second Chance Football and Multi-sport scheme. Over 40 students have been involved in this scheme since its inception.
Victoria Earl, who participated in Second Chance football, said: “For me, the second chance project has been very rewarding.
“It was great to see everyone getting involved with the games and enjoying themselves whilst providing me with valuable coaching experience.’”
Durham University students again travelled to Zambia in 2008, assisting the ‘Sport Action Zambia scheme’ which aims to deliver development programmes in compounds, non-government funded schools, workshops for adolescent girls and festivals around sport.
The six students who participated in 2008 prepared teams for the Wallace Tournament, an inter-community event involving young people of all ages in several sports.
The Moving On project provides advice on housing & benefits, informing young people of their rights and responsibilities. They also provide support to young people in emergencies such as helping them secure safe and appropriate accommodation.
Working on this in 2008 was Emma-Jane Cowey. “At school I thought I’d encountered a variety of people, but I have come across so many more people here, most of whom had have difficulties in their upbringing, and its great to see them have fun through sport.”
Working with the Moving On group, as well as a project aimed at helping young mums has enabled Emma to be first aid trained, and achieving Level 1 qualifications in basketball, volleyball and athletics, and set to complete her first coaching course in trampolining in 2009.
She said: “Participating in such informative and comprehensive coaching courses help me improve my confidence for when I will undertake a placement as a physical education teacher in a school.
“I also need six coaching badges to pursue a PGCE in physical education, so they will be invaluable in developing my career”.
One of the showpiece events of Team Durham Community’s calendar is the Rugby Charity Challenge.
This year it was primarily organised by a group of Podium 2012 volunteers from Durham Gilesgate Sports College led by Amanda Jones, Events Scholar for Team Durham.
The event was a huge success, with thousands of punds being raised as Durham beat Nottingham 14-10.
Another high-profile event in 2008 was the Second Chance Debate. Debating the notion ‘This House believes alcohol is more dangerous than illegal drugs’ a group from the Second Chance and Multi-sport programme was managed by October’s ‘Volunteer of the Month’ Rachel Francis.
Rachel led an intensive eight-week training course, helping homeless clients from the Tyneside Cyrenians to develop their communication skills through debating,
She said: “It is the distinctness of the project, from any other, that defines Second Chance, as a project which empowers by opening up judgements, opinions, and the people within it.
“I am delighted to have been a part in Second Chance; it has become a hugely important and valuable part of my life, and I hope that all those involved have benefited from and enjoyed it as much as I have.”
At Queen’s Campus in Stockton, students have gained experience for completion of coaching badges through assisting in various sports and after school clubs.
This included work with Stockton Town Rugby Football Club and Stockton Town Swimming Club. The department also put a student through the Level 2 Award in Community Sports Leadership, a direct result of his involvement in the Second Chance programme.
A future international project of Team Durham Community is Project Sri Lanka. Students will assist in the reconstruction of tsunami devastated communities and aim to help with the long-term sustainable development of both coastal and inland villages.
Short placements for outstanding senior Durham students to run sporting and PE activities in primary and secondary schools and local communities at DMA are in the pipeline, according to teamdurham.com.