ECFA Football Activators
ECFA aims to develop the future workforce by providing students with a world-leading FE youth leadership educational and training programme, that empowers high-quality learning and enhances student employability. We support member colleges and stakeholders to recruit, develop, deploy and retain student volunteers through a cross-curricular approach, using football leadership as value added to students’ study programmes.
Working in partnership with The Football Association, the ECFA Football Activator programme was launched in 2015. This programme followed the successful pilot of the Lead2Football Activator Programme which focused on driving a growth in female participation at ages 14-19 during 2014/15. During the first year, 80 colleges recruited 160 Football Activators with the aim to engage 300 new participants football. The successes of the programme lead to the total engagement of 18,000 + students within football activity.
The ECFA Football Activator roles within colleges now firmly sit within the FE Community Hub model as a core strand of the ‘Workforce’ pillar. This year has seen the recruitment of 280 ECFA Football Activators across the country. As part of the programme, the Activators attend various training including remote, regional and national training – the latter of which has been hosted at Wembley Stadium for the past two years.
The programme provides industry realistic experience and key employability skills for students, as well as enhancing the capacity of workforce and increasing football provision.
Here are some thoughts from a few current ECFA Football Activators:
‘I thoroughly enjoy my role as an Activator and through this role I have developed various transferable skills, including my resilience to challenges and my ability to develop appropriate solutions by overcoming barriers to create participation opportunities. Being an Activator has led to the development of my confidence to present workshops, facilitate discussions as well as lead sessions. Working within a diverse environment I have developed my empathy and interpersonal skills, making me approachable and ensuring I am relatable to my peers and other key partners in my Activator role. My ability to influence has been thoroughly challenged in this role, ranging from college staff, to external partners and my peers.’ Oli Moore
‘Being an Activator has not only developed me as a person, but it has helped me to meet new people and see the skills that they have and it has now helped me to improve my skills such as respect, confidence, leadership, communication and the ability to work under pressure. The role has taught me there is no challenge greater than the challenge to improve yourself.’ Iasha Bell
‘Volunteering as a football Activator has enhanced my educational life by enlightening me to various opportunities that are available within football. I feel I can bring these opportunities to the attention of those that are currently inactive and don’t partake within sport. In addition, being an Activator has provided me with a platform to enhance my employment opportunities. It has always been a passion of mine to study Sports and Exercise Psychology at University, and being an Activator has ignited my drive for this even more as I am now aware of the sports psychology employment opportunities available within football. I feel like I can really make a difference to others.’ Rohan Williams
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