FBB’s young leader Debra reflects on inspirational Raise Your Game conference

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FBB’s young leader Debra reflects on inspirational Raise Your Game conference

Every year, our friends at Kick It Out organise their amazing Raise Your Game conference to provide an inclusive platform for anyone looking to break into the football industry. This week’s event at Arsenal’s Emirates stadium was their best yet, and from an FBB perspective it was a fantastic opportunity to introduce the next generation of young coaches and leaders to our organisation. It was also a hugely inspirational day for one of our own young leaders Debra, who was attending the conference for the first time. 

The annual Raise Your Game event is a mentoring event which offers those in attendance an opportunity to receive one-to-one mentoring as well as specially designed media, coaching and careers workshops. It is attended by hundreds of delegates, as well as leading professionals from across the game, with experienced coaches such as Darren Moore and renowned journalists such as the Times’ Henry Winter in attendance, amongst many others. They act as mentors and provide essential career advice to attendees, as well as speaking on inspirational panels throughout the day.

As well as inviting FBB staff Ceylon Hickman and Jasper Kain to mentor attendees at the event, Kick It Out once again provided us with a stall to exhibit our young people’s work and share our career opportunities with the conference attendees. With FBB growing faster than ever before, this was a great opportunity to recruit for our the 11 new roles which we recently announced we will be hiring over the next few months. It was also a very formative experience for Debra, one of our own young leaders, who represented FBB at our exhibition stand and spoke to potential new recruits about our work with young people.

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Debra, 17, is a graduate of the FBB Schools programme and now works part-time as a coach for the organisation while she completes her A-levels. Along with FBB co-founder Tom Perez, Debra spent the day running the FBB stall and was a brilliant ambassador for our work, speaking to attendees about her amazing journey as well as the range of opportunities available at FBB. She even found time at the end of the day to get some fantastic advice from leading mentors at the event, such as Arsenal Fan TV’s Robbie Lyle and BBC Sport’s Anne-Marie Batson, who co-hosted the event.

For Debra, representing FBB at such an important event and meeting such inspirational leaders, this was a life-changing experience: “Today was amazing! I think for me personally, I’ve realised that everyone’s journey is different. We don’t have to mirror the same journey that everyone has gone down.” How did it make her feel to be speaking to attendees? “It just made me feel so proud, standing on that table, handing out leaflets for the apprenticeships, talking to people and being able to find people that are going to help the next generation!”

Our four Coaching & Educational apprenticeships proved particularly popular – with plenty of young people taking flyers and asking about the roles. We are very excited about this newly launched apprenticeship scheme, which will see three apprentices hired in London and one in Manchester, starting full time paid roles in late August 2019. Successful applicants will get the opportunity to work towards their FA Level 1 & Teaching Apprenticeship Level 3 qualifications whilst gaining valuable experience from working on the FBB Schools programme.

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Hashim, Rashad & Munir at the “Raise Your Game” event

It was also the first time that a few of our own young leaders attended the event as mentees, with graduates from our first ever FBB Schools programme, Hashim, Munir and Rashad, taking their own initiative to attend the event. We are sure that many other FBB Schools graduates will attend future Raise Your Game events when it comes to the time to choose their career paths, with many of them already expressing an interest in working the football industry. We are grateful to Kick It Out for providing such a brilliant platform for young people looking to take the first important steps of their future careers. 

If you’d like to find out more about our apprenticeships and other roles available at FBB, click here: https://footballbeyondborders.org/fbb-grows-to-new-heights-we-are-hiring-join-our-team-at-this-exciting-stage-in-our-journey/