A unique World Cup-themed football festival at a CV Life venue has proven a huge hit with schools and pupils.
The Inspire Trust Football Competition took place over two days at Centre AT7.
Schools from the trust including Stockingford Academy, Hearsall Community Academy, Whittle Academy, Clifford Bridge Academy and Walsgrave Church of England Academy attended the event on Thursday and Friday.
While the event was centred around football, the wider message was one of inclusivity. For those not too keen on participating on the pitch, extra roles were included, such as referees, match reporters, illustrators, coordinators and more.
This meant all children were involved and able to contribute and come away like they had had an impact on the day.
CV Life’s Ben Tidy oversaw the two day event, making sure just shy of 200 children had a fun, safe and inclusive experience.
Ben said: “We have fantastic facilities here at CV Life and our education team work in all of the Inspire Trust schools. So we thought it would be good to bring all the Trust together to celebrate all the great work we do across the city.
“But more importantly it was about getting these kids involved and participating – for those not really into football we found other roles for them which hopefully meant everyone left feeling like they’d had fun and made a difference to the day.”
Wendy Jackson is the community manager at CV Life said: “It was a fantastic couple of days and it was fabulous to see so many smiles.
“Football has the power to inspire, but not necessarily just for the sporty types – it can be so inclusive so that’s really what we wanted to focus on, making sure all the children were involved and having fun.”
The event was well received and the Trust feedback was very positive.
The Trust’s curriculum development associate Mathew Thomas felt a “wonderful sense of ‘sport for all’ was evident” while Stockingford Academy headteacher Gillian Bowser shared that “the children have come into school so enthused and proud of themselves”.
Meanwhile, the Trust’s head of education across primary schools said the event “obviously had a massive impact on our children”.
Stockingford’s Year Six teacher Donna Henry was full of praise for CV Life staff and the way the tournament was run.
She said: “I want to say a massive ‘thank you’ from Stockingford Academy for organising and hosting a fun football tournament. Our children had such a great morning. It was a well organised and inclusive morning.
“Our football teams felt supported by the enthusiastic coaches who went around with our teachers.
“All coaches and the referees were friendly, approachable and helpful. It is lovely to see the passion and camaraderie between all of them and the rivalry and banter thrown in – it helped to spur on some tiring footballers.
“The event itself was well paced and even our reporters group came back with a smile on their face, filled with information that the football teams hadn’t seen, ready to share snippets of information to help us get an overview of the morning.
“We would willingly participate in anything like this again in the future and hopefully with some of the other Inspire Schools.”