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Young Leaders Attend FA Leadership Academy at St Georges Park

Cornwall FA Youth Council members Kiera and James head to St Georges Park for FA Leadership Academy.

Last week we were excited to see Cornwall FA Youth Council members Kiera and James spend 4 days at St Georges Park for the FA’s Leadership Academy.

The FA Leadership Academy is a programme coordinated by the FA and FA National Youth Council which aims to up skill and develop young people to allow them to have a greater impact within their Youth Council and football community. This started with a 4 day residential at St Georges Park which will then be followed by a season long development programme for many young leaders up and down the country. The event saw over 60 leaders in attendance, this including a dozen international delegates from across the world. The event was also attended/supported by FA staff and mentors from a variety of County FA’s and partner organisations.

Here is what Josh, Cornwall FA Football Development Officer and National FA Youth Council Member, who was a staff member at the event had this to say about the experience;

"Throughout the week the leaders had various opportunities to explore different areas of leadership, self-development and communication, Kiera and James were excellent and were a great example to everyone in attendance. It was amazing to see them both grow and develop their skills/knowledge on a variety of complex topics and sessions across the 4 days. They confidently collaborated with a variety of young people from different counties and international delegates, showing exceptional leadership in every workshop or session they took part in. 

James and I were also given the opportunity to talk on stage at Graduation around Cornwall FA’s Youth Council, youth-adult partnerships and the impact James would like to make, as a youth leader, over the coming season. He emphasised clearly the need to invest in young people and it was evident the impact his message had across the room. Massive congratulations also to Kiera who designed CCFAYC’s new logo which sat proudly above the stage for everyone to admire and recognise. I can’t wait to see what these two do next

The young leaders will now undergo a season long program where they will have monthly tasks to implement the key the learning from academy into their own environments/communities. We look forward to seeing both Kiera and James progress over the season and we know they will make a hugely positive impact, both for the CCFAYC and for Cornish football."


James, member of the Cornwall FA Youth Council said this about his time at St Georges Park;

"What a great week at St. Georges Park! An experience of a lifetime! The first day was fully packed with fun and engaging topics where I learnt so many new things, firstly about the four hobs and then the acronym SHED. The second workshop was about my Personal Leadership Philosophy. This taught me about values and how a philosophy can be used in everyday life.

Day two was all based around connecting with others and communities, the first workshop was about communication, conversation and connecting, focusing on improving everyday used skills to maximise the potential, this workshop taught everyone how communication isn't just verbal but is also non-verbal. The other workshop was about creating long lasting relationships where we learnt about BRAVING, overall this is about trust and how there is many different stages which create the best trust. Later in that evening we celebrated the achievements of many great young people, this graduation also celebrated last year's participants in the FA Leadership Academy. I was privileged to speak at the graduation where so many inspiring young people were awarded with awards to show their continued hard work.

Wednesday was the third day of the academy and this saw all the FA Leadership Academy travel over to Fieri, an outdoor leadership activity group, which was an exhilarating and entertaining day. The day was fulfilled with team building activities. Throughout the day teams were aimed to collect points based on leadership skills, followership skills and overall completion of the task. Each group contained members from different counties so was aimed to create a lasting relationship which worked well between each member so that the tasks could be completed in the best manner possible.

The final day was based around serving the community where our workshops we aimed towards planning for change and gaining an insight. Both workshops taught me a lot on how I can help my local club and also my county in a positive way. The workshop specifically taught me how change is not always bad but especially in the long run it is good. Following on gaining an insight taught me a lot about how statistics can help a lot with planning for many different things.

Throughout the week I was always meeting new people not only from England but across the world.

 I am going to use as much of the knowledge as I can that I have gained from the Leadership Academy 2019 to impact Cornwall. The week has taught me a lot about myself but also how I can pass on beneficial knowledge onto others so that not only I succeed in the future but many others do likewise."

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Cornwall FA Youth Council Marketing Officer, Kiera had this to say about her experience; 

"My name is Kiera and I work on the Cornwall FA Youth Council as Marketing and Communication Officer. Last week I got to represent Cornwall at St George’s Park for the 2019 FA Leadership Academy. The Academy saw 60 young leaders from 13 different countries take part in one life changing week.

Over the first two days we looked into our personal improvement and the use of ‘SHED’, our Personal Leadership Philosophies, Communication, Conversation, Connections and Trust. The third day we got to put all of this into practice by going off Campus to Conkers, getting stuck in to different practical team activities (of course the team I was in won the overall award, winning by one point!). Then finally day four was rounding everything up with the final two workshops of Insight and Change.

I plan on taking what I’ve learnt from the Academy into a local school I will be teaching at in the start of the new school year, I aim to adapt ideas taken from the Academy and develop this in a way that children in Year 5 and 6 will understand with my workshops being over an extended period of time rather than four action packed days! I will also adapt the practical sessions to suit the needs of the children. To make the most out of this experience I will also like to hold a Youth Council meeting explaining and sharing the workshops and how they can make use of any helpful information. This will also be taken back to my football environment as it has allowed me to think more broadly about to coach relating to how each person may learn and how they think about situation, realising that there is not only one option to complete a task.

Not only will I take things away from the Academy to help and inspire others. It has also taught me a lot about myself and also where I want to go in the future. It is so hard to choose one memory of the week but one has to be seeing our new logo at a National Conference and although we are at the end of the country, we still have a huge voice in the football world and it filled me with such pride.

With many thanks to every member of staff that created and helped with FALA. Thank-you for this opportunity I am so pleased that I was able to a part of the Academy and I have made some lifelong friends. Photos mean the world to me, the best thing about them is they will never change and memories are captured forever"