St Agnes AFC were offered the support from an FA Mentor last season, some of their committee and volunteer members initially wondered how it would work for their club but after Tash Mills began working with the club they were already seeing the difference her support had made.
Mandy Kimmins, Chair of St Agnes AFC said this about Tash and her work with the club;
“Over the time Tash has worked within our club the benefits have been incredible!
With a quiet reassuring manner our FA Mentor Tash has become a fabulous asset and spring board to our club.
Directly because of her involvement and the individual and group support and confidence she has offered coaches and managers we now have better qualified staff delivering better sessions.
Managers who wouldn't even have considered furthering their qualifications have completed Level 2 courses with her regularly in touch, mentoring, supporting and helping in a manner I think has been way above her role.
Tash has been able to work with the coaches who want to learn and be mentored but has also broken down barriers with those less enthusiastic ones who are reluctant to input and resistant/sceptical of change. She has demonstrated some really good communication skills and resilience on her part with amazingly positive results!
Tash has been particularly working recently to help develop our female coaches setting up a network group between them and delivering CPD for both female only coaches and with our Disability Section.
A couple of positive case studies (there haven't been any negatives!):
1. Our men's first team manager involved in football all his life as a player and coach, manager of a men's team for 20 years with an old style Level 1 Qualification and, whilst interested and eager to learn, not feeling confident or able to progress his coaching any further.
Tash has supported and encouraged him to now complete his Level 2 qualification (including the required Youth Modules 1 & 2 elements) this simply would not have happened without her input.
A men's team manager having never been involved or with any confidence in youth football he offered to fill in and deliver an under 8's session at the weekend which he successfully completed and enjoyed.
Asked what he thought about the FA Mentoring he said:
"It has been really good. It's made me rethink the way I do my practises, how I bring in progression and the way to communicate and deliver sessions. Most of all it has given me confidence to learn and progress as a coach."
2. One of our Disability Coaches was previously involved with a different club set up and Tash had been offering to support him for some time without a positive response. Since joining St Agnes AFC in the summer he has been encouraged to engage with Tash as Mentor.
Our Disability Section is new this season with 2 coaches who had never met working together. Through time and patient Mentoring Tash has worked with each individually and jointly and now has them structured with a plan of sessions to deliver together across the League and Championship levels both feeling confident and supported. It’s been fabulous! The players absolutely love the set up and the 'better' coaching being developed is benefitting them all. A couple of weeks ago I watched one player who normally can only walk around with the football literally run up the ramp to the training pitch he was so excited and engaged to be there.
We now have our own Club Mentor in place and through Tash's involvement coaches supporting each other across the club.
I wanted to share some of the amazing positives our club has experienced from being part of the FA Mentoring Programme. Also to share with you and say well done and thank you to Tash who is an enthusiastic, brilliant FA Mentor and a fantastic advocate and ambassador of the scheme.”
If you are a coach or part of a club and think your coaches would benefit from having the support of an FA Mentor then please complete the 'Register your Interest' form below, as you can see the Mentor Programme is a fantastic opportunity for any level of coach who is enthusiastic to develop!
IMAGE: Ellie Mears, Student at Falmouth University
Get in Touch
Register your Interest form: https://goo.gl/forms/biJ8tPeWTwZFTGC92
01208 269010/ firstname.lastname@example.org