Thousands more children in Scotland to benefit from positive coaching

Winning Scotland Foundation commence a new project with a range of partners to create opportunities for young people through sport and physical activity.

The Positive Coaching Scotland Plus programme (PCS Plus) is launching a new pilot project to support young people from disadvantaged backgrounds to learn important life skills through informal sport, play and physical activity. The project will benefit young people in care, children from areas of deprivation and young people with disabilities.

PCS Plus works by equipping the people who deliver sport and physical activity to children – like coaches and teachers – with tools and guidance to create a holistic learning environment that uses sport as the platform for deep life learning.

Up to 200 coaches, teachers and youth workers from the following groups will receive training:

Kibble, a charity that is Scotland’s specialist provider of services and care for young people affected by adversity or trauma.

PEEK, a charity who improve the life chances of children and young people in the east end of Glasgow through play and creative learning.

Bike For Good, a cycling charity that helps young people access bicycles, and learn to ride and maintain them.

Trust Rugby International, a charity that uses unified rugby, where players with and without disabilities play together, to enable participation for those who may otherwise be prevented.

The pilot project will be delivered by expert tutors from Winning Scotland Foundation, Scottish Rugby, the Scottish FA and sportscotland.

The project is addressing a gap where adults who support young people in informal sport often miss out on the training and development opportunities that their peers in sports like football and rugby enjoy as standard.

By providing this training to coaches and teachers in charities and care centres, PCS Plus gives young people who do casual sport and physical activity (e.g. as part of their education or in their community) the chance to receive coaching to develop crucial life skills like confidence, perseverance and learning from mistakes.

Funded by investment managers Baillie Gifford and delivered by the charity Winning Scotland Foundation, the training commenced with 50 teachers from Kibble and 20 coaches from PEEK on Tuesday 13th August in Glasgow.

Mhari Borland, project manager from Winning Scotland Foundation said: “With Baillie Gifford we recognised that thousands of youngsters who are playing sport and being active, through our charity partners’ services, could develop confidence and resilience through positive coaching.

"By collaborating with these groups, and providing their coaches, teachers and youth workers with PCS Plus training, we believe the young people in their care will gain emotional, physical and psychological development, increasing their chances of fulfilling their potential.”

Michaela Collins, CEO of PEEK said, “PEEK are excited to be working in collaboration with Winning Scotland Foundation through their PCS Plus programme. This is a brilliant opportunity to further develop our staff skills and knowledge in supporting young people to become more confident and resilient.”

Tom Laurie, Head Teacher of Kibble, said: “The session provided education staff with coaching tools to engage young people positively in the learning process. Teachers were reminded of the importance of building a positive learning environment with young people at the centre. The emphasis on effort, challenge, struggle and learning from mistakes provided knowledge in helping pupils to achieve greater levels of success”.