Youngsters’ first foot on the coaching ladder

Young Borders coaches are looking to get local sport on the right track. Back row from left: Ross Graham, Gavin Bantges, Finlay Wall, Gary Robertson, Hamish Robinson, Rachel Gaylor; Middle: Joanna Cavaroli, Nicola Wealleans, Megan Smoth, Claire Hill, Anna Finnie, Sophie Collins, Niamh Smoth. Front: Melissa Willi, Lorna Caddick.
Young Borders coaches are looking to get local sport on the right track. Back row from left: Ross Graham, Gavin Bantges, Finlay Wall, Gary Robertson, Hamish Robinson, Rachel Gaylor; Middle: Joanna Cavaroli, Nicola Wealleans, Megan Smoth, Claire Hill, Anna Finnie, Sophie Collins, Niamh Smoth. Front: Melissa Willi, Lorna Caddick.
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SECONDARY school pupils from across the Scottish Borders are set to play a key role in taking forward the 2012 Olympic promise of creating a sporting legacy for the region through participating in the Borders Sport and Leisure Youth Coach Programme.

Twenty-three students drawn from the region’s nine secondary schools will participate in the programme, a year-long initiative featuring coaching education, support and mentoring, with the goal of increasing the number of qualified young coaches.

Once the programme is complete, they will be able to use their skills to support and deliver school and community sport, increasing the opportunities for people to participate in sporting activities across the region.

The Youth Coaching Programme will be delivered by Borders Sport and Leisure’s Active Schools team, which has run a number of coaching education courses in the past, but this will be the first full-year, ongoing structured training programme, and will guarantee the participants the opportunity to achieve at least a level 1 coaching qualification in their chosen sport.

Anna Finnie from Hawick is one of the students participating in the programme.

She said: “I think it is great to be part of the programme.

“Coaching and working with our next generation of young sportsmen and women is something I really enjoy.

“I am also hoping to study PE at university and I feel this programme is a vital part of my development and experience.”

Ewan Jackson, chief executive of Borders Sport and Leisure, added; “Our Active Schools team is very excited at being involved in the Youth Coach Programme.

“It is a great opportunity for young people to enhance their coaching abilities and be supported for a full year in their skills development.

“The pupils involved are extremely enthusiastic and have a real desire to give back to their schools and communities.”