Celebrating Successes and Constantly Improving
January 11th 2017. CAC strives to improve every day. During our meetings this week at Hawthorne Police Department in Los Angeles we are reflecting on the successes of 2016 and discussing how we continue to be an organization which provides year-round educational consultancy and mentorship to create social impact through sport. Over the past day our meetings have included extensive sessions on:
- Monitoring and Evaluation in every aspect of CAC’s work
- Online Education Program and the use of technology in our partnerships
- How to develop our year-round resources offered to all of our partners
- The Self-Directed Learning methodology and how it applies to each partnership
- The progress and development of the Community Impact Coach initiative
- Our ongoing use of social media and this website!
CAC is adept at working in many sectors. Alongside more meetings this week we will also be presenting at the NSCAA convention, running a session for public school teachers in LA, talking on a radio show and working with the Hawthorne Police Department to engage children in Hawthorne. We are delighted to continue to build our productive partnership with the Hawthorne PD who have been very kind to allow us to use their meeting space.
Impacting Fiji Through Australia (Part 1)
September 24, 2016. Fiji is a beautiful country in October, but this story starts much earlier and in a much different place weather-wise. Melbourne, Australia can be breezy and rainy towards the end of their winter in September. Despite the changing conditions, a class of students at Holmesglen TAFE University learned both On-Field curriculum and classroom lessons taught by Coaches Across Continents Chief Executive Strategist Brian Suskiewicz. These students studying Sport Development and Event Management, and in one month they will be traveling to Fiji to work directly with 6 elementary schools through the Fiji Ministry of Education as well as hosting coaching education workshops throughout the country.
In a unique new partnership, CAC is looking to implement our curriculum and methodology through these Australian students so that they can have a lasting and sustainable impact through their existing partnership with the government of Fiji as well as throughout their budding coaching careers in Australia.
Over the course of a week, students studied about sustainable impact, the importance of both curriculum delivery and coaching personality, monitoring and evaluation, and the power of sport for social impact among other topics. Next month, many of these students will leave Australia and get a stamp in their passport for the first time, and see firsthand how their new knowledge and efforts will translate to a new environment with their Pacific neighbor.
Later this year we will chronicle their efforts in Fiji and have them provide a direct update from their work in the second part of this blog with accompanying pictures. All of this will be done without direct CAC staffing, highlighting the sustainability that is possible when working in partnerships. We look forward to how they implement their new knowledge and create lasting and sustainable impact abroad, as well as the impact this trip and partnership has on their own lives.
CAC’s 2015: A Year In Review!
April 26th 2016. Coaches Across Continents is delighted to present our Annual Review 2015! This incredible document, developed with the Taiji Brand Group, brings our record-breaking 2015 to life. It details the highlights of our year from developing our ASK for Choice curriculum as a Clinton Global Initiative member to the inspirational work of our partners on key global days such as Peace Day. The review provides more information on some of our community partnerships which address topics such as disaster recovery in Nepal, refugees in Uganda and child rights in Brazil.
This year we are giving twenty lucky CAC supporters the chance to win an ultra-durable One World Futbol. All you have to do is read the Annual Review and complete this simple questionnaire (Hint: if you don’t know the answers you can find them in our Annual Review 2015!). Anyone who answers the questions correctly will be entered into the draw to win!
Once again here is the Annual Review 2015.
And click here for the form and a chance to win a One World Futbol.
We want to thank each and everyone of you for your ongoing support of Coaches Across Continents. We hope you enjoy reading this review as much as we enjoyed doing the work!
Evaluating Coaches Across Continents’ 2015 Impact So Far
“The best thing about working with Coaches Across Continents is the unique and special impact of the CAC program.”
Paul Lwanga, Football for Hope, Peace & Unity participant, Rwanda.
August 17th 2015. Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) plays an important part in everything we do at Coaches Across Continents: baseline/endline surveys involve every coach, and quantitative and qualitative data is collected at every program. CAC uses its data and statistics to evaluate current practice as well as to inform future developments.
Comprehensive needs analysis allows CAC to identify the greatest social impact needs and priorities and to design locally relevant programs for partners. Baseline statistics demonstrate the initial attitudes, skills and knowledge of the coaches, including what they know about child protection, their understanding of football for social impact, or their inclination towards gender equality in sport.
For example, only 15% of participants had ever coached a game of football for social impact before working with CAC in 2015 and only 7% of coaches have had training in how to protect children on the sports field. In many communities, less than a third of local coaches were coaching or planning on coaching girls prior to working with CAC in 2015. In some programs, none of the participants were coaching or planning on coaching girls.
CAC’s WISER M&E model makes it possible to follow the growth of the organization as well as to identify the successes and impacts programs are having year-round in communities.
Since the beginning of 2015, 19,376 On-Field coaching education hours have been dedicated to local communities. CAC has worked with 51 implementing partners, 823 community partners, and 2,225 local coaches. In total so far, CAC has reached 180,879 youth in 2015. At this time of year in 2014, CAC had only worked with 42 implementing partners, 685 community members, 1,859 local coaches and had reached 132,375 youth.
In addition to On-Field coaching education, CAC delivers year-round support to partner programs such as Online Coaching Education, curriculum development, strategic planning, M&E development, social media support or sharing of best practices. This maximizes social impact and allows for the incredible impacts our partners achieve in their local communities.
Some of the successes so far this year have included:
– local coaches implementing the CAC curriculum with indigenous children to educate on drug abuse in Mexico.
– the launch of a menstruation awareness and sanitary towel collection campaign to “encourage men to be more involved in what the adolescent girls and women go through in their menstruation cycle” in Nairobi, Kenya.
– the creation of an entirely new NGO, ‘Green-Kenya’ for better implementation of the CAC curriculum in Kenyan communities with a specific focus on the environment.
– the expansion of implementing partner Uni Papua to 28 communities in Indonesia.
– the start of numerous new female empowerment through sport initiatives in Cameroon, Kenya, Zanzibar, and India.
– the incorporation of CAC HIV games into daily trainings in Hyderabad, India, a topic that was previously avoided due to cultural sensitivities. Local coaches are now openly discussing sexual education in Hyderabad through sport for social impact.
– the Mbarara community in Western Uganda working to build primary and secondary schools with playgrounds in order to provide children with sport for social impact education.
For more information on Coaches Across Continents’ impacts in developing communities, you can read the ‘2014 In Review’ report.
Measuring the Immeasurable: Social Impact
September 1st, 2014. Coaches Across Continents’ unique WISER monitoring and evaluation (M&E) provides a detailed picture of what is happening on the ground. Not only does our M&E measure the outcomes of our On-Field programs, it also gives us valuable insights into the impact CAC is having year-round in local communities across the globe. Accounting for the successes and challenges unique to each partner program allows us to continuously improve the quality of our programs and systems.
Our team has just finished a half-year review of our On-Field programs. In 2014, CAC has piloted many initiatives, including training in M&E and child protection and our finalized Hat-Trick curriculum. Here is what our monitoring and evaluation is telling us.
So far, CAC has conducted 42 trainings for 38 implementing partner programs in 2014, reaching 1,859 coaches who will in turn impact 132,375 youth in their respective communities.
CAC strives to build strong, collaborative partnerships to achieve sustainability by creating local networks of football for social impact leaders around the world. As a result, the number of local member partners CAC works with has considerably increased: since the beginning of 2014, CAC has empowered 685 community partners, five times more than in 2013. Our programs connect like-minded educators who can serve as a resource to one another: local coaches in Zimbabwe created a Facebook group to keep in touch, coaches in Tanzania planned weekly meetings, and a committee was set up in Zambia to oversee the implementation of CAC’s 24-week curriculum.
In addition to developing a football resource packet for Peace One Day to be played in over 130 countries leading up to September 21st, CAC launched its improved Hat-Trick curriculum in January, based on our ‘Chance to Choice’ philosophy. The curriculum is composed of more than 180 games, including a new child rights module bringing to life the UNICEF Convention on the Rights of the Child. The curriculum allows for even more flexibility to fit the distinctive social needs of each community. In total, more than 120 different games, linked to 36 different role models, have been played in 2014.
CAC is particularly successful in training local coaches and organizations in using football for social impact. For instance, 97% of all local coaches now know a football game to teach children to find creative solutions to their problems instead of asking for the answer, compared to 24% prior to 2014.
Health and Wellness is an important component of our curriculum. This includes many HIV behavior change games,and 95% of local coaches trained know a football game to teach children about how to protect themselves against sexually transmitted diseases, compared to only 31% of coaches who had never attended a CAC training. Returning coaches have noticed an improvement in their players’ overall health and their awareness of the importance of taking care of their bodies following the implementation of CAC games throughout the year.
CAC places an important emphasis on female empowerment and female participation in sports. Out of the 36 role models used On-Field, 25 were female, giving more than 90% of local coaches the tools to teach children about powerful female role models. Games directly addressing female empowerment and women’s roles in society have lead to numerous discussions around the world about the root causes of inequality, traditional roles of women and men, ways of integrating women and girls in the community, or the importance of female participation in sports. This has led to increased female participation, with 70% of local coaches planning on integrating girls in their teams, double the amount at the beginning of the year. Brazil clubs have expressed their desire to add girls to their trainings, and other groups have created girls specific afterschool groups, teams, and leagues. In Zanzibar participants brainstormed five solutions they could implement to give more power to women in their community after playing one of CAC’s gender equity games.
A few impacts of our conflict resolution and social inclusion games include local coaches engaging in discussions concerning homosexuality and in identifying solutions to tackle widespread corruption. Our Peace Day games have been launched in many communities affected by a long history of conflict and violence such as the DRC and Rwanda. A game between a deaf and an able-bodied team was organized at the end of our program in Sierra Leone that focused largely on integrating people with disabilities; an unprecedented event according to our partner program.
Quantified Impact from our Baseline/Endline Questions:
- Do you know a football game to teach young people to find creative solutions to their problems, both as a team and individually, instead of asking for the answer?
- Do you know a football game to teach young people how to protect themselves from sexually transmitted infections, including HIV/AIDS?
- Do you know a football game to teach young people about the role and place of women and girls on the soccer field, at home and in the community?
- Do you know a football game to teach young people how best to resolve conflict?
100% of our participants have received training in child protection and have promised to “ALWAYS protect and NEVER abuse children and young people in their care”, now mandatory to receive a CAC certificate.Only 14% said they had received child protection training before being involved with CAC. In Kitale, Kenya, 150 children learned their rights for the first time and spoke up about child abuse in their community. Child rights games have been played at 50% of our programs and inspired local coaches to invent new games teaching children about their rights.
CAC also keeps track of our partners’ progress towards Self-Directed Learning. One third of coaches participating in a CAC program this year had already attended another CAC training a previous year. This is crucial to develop local ownership and self-sufficiency.
Introducing new methodology and best practices is the first step towards creating self-directed learners. More than 20 of our partner programs reported that CAC introduced ‘new learning’ or a ‘new way of coaching.’
In spite of 64% of our 2014 programs entering the first year of the partnership, 47% of them are in the adapt or create stages of Self-Directed Learning, whereby they not only understand the concept of sport for social impact but are also capable of adapting or inventing games to address new social issues. Participants all around the world have developed their own football for social impact curriculum. Themes include child rights that address regional laws, deforestation, combating HIV stigma, cholera, malaria, wealth redistribution and maternal mortality.
CAC has also been active Off-Field, speaking at high-level events in India, Qatar, San Francisco and New York on a wide range of topics including CSR policy for football development, sport for development, youth development and empowering girls through sports. In 2014, CAC launched a new corporate partnership with Chevrolet, which has already had tremendous success with projects benefiting our local partners Rumah Cemara in Bandung, Indonesia and Beyond the Ball in Chicago, USA. The CAC team has also put our writing skills to the test, and our paper on CAC’s Self-Directed Learning model was accepted for publication in a special issue of Soccer & Society. To end the first half of 2014 on a high note, CAC has been shortlisted for the 2014 Beyond Sport Awards for the highly competitive Corporate of the Year category.
2013: Off the Field
January 1st 2014. Happy New Year! Coaches Across Continents have had an incredible 2013 both with the programs all over the world and with the development of the organisation to ensure the quality and consistency of the work that is done. Across the board CAC have worked in more countries with more community partners, coached more local coaches and reached more children through the program. This operational growth is not possible without constant work behind the scenes to ensure that CAC adapts and improves to solidify its spot as global leaders in sport for social impact.
Coaches Across Continents is based on collaborative partnerships which are used to ensure the greatest impact for the communities in which we work. From on field partnerships with all 51 of our community partners to off field partnerships which strengthen the organisation they are integral to our success. In 2013 we continued to develop our partnership with One World Futbol, the maker of the virtually indestructible ball. These sustainable balls are now being used at most of our programs with many of our community partners gaining access to the ball. Our network of NGO’s benefits One World Futbol and the balls add great value to our program. We filmed a program in Brazil for One World Futbol/ Chevrolet and ESPN which resulted in some inspiring footage for all parties involved.
Our work with Standard Chartered bank led to many incredible programs in 2013 in Ghana, Tanzania and Indonesia highlighting the potential for successful non-profit and corporate partnerships. The Standard Chartered/ Women Win/ Coaches Across Continents GOAL female empowerment program also succeeded by reaching thousands more young people. CAC also demonstrated our ability to engage employees by running training for a large number of Standard Chartered employees in Indonesia. We have worked closely with other partners such as XL Soccer, and Harvard University in 2013 while our membership within the Street Football World and Beyond Sport networks continue to be invaluable.
CAC have also had a strong presence off the field at global conferences and workshops which highlight the importance of sport and its ability to positively impact communities. In April we attended the Soccerex event in Manchester, UK. Combining with OWF we had a booth and were able to generate exposure and meet with many influential people in the world of sport. This was followed by Nick Gates, the founder of CAC, speaking at a Soccerex convention in Brazil in June. In September CAC participated in the Street Football World North America workshop in Philadelphia. This involved high level meetings focused on strategic direction, monitoring and evaluation and human resource. Following this workshop Nick spoke at the Beyond Soccer and Beyond Sport events in Philadelphia.
This meant that CAC were represented on panels concerning monitoring the success of the program and curriculum development demonstrating the high regard with which CAC is held in the sport for social impact community. Throughout the year CAC has been recognised in the field with requests to both speak and to attend events such as the Doha Goals Forum in December and the Social Venture Network convention in Baltimore. As sport for social impact grows it is clear that CAC has been recognised as a global leader in terms of programming, strategic growth, evaluation and curriculum. This standing in the community has already continued into 2014 with Nick scheduled to speak at a conference in India in February.
The on-field growth over 5 years has precipitated a development and growth in the organisation off the field. There are now more staff to run and develop CAC with more needed in 2014 to continue the previous years successes. Our coach advisory board constantly work to develop our curriculum to be at the forefront of international issues such as child protection and women’s rights. While the business advisory board are key in allowing these programs to run smoothly through their improvement of organisational policies and practices. Our award winning WISER monitoring and evaluation system is regularly tested and adapted to stay ahead of the curve.
We understand the importance of an innovative and relevant organisation and therefore have been undergoing an in depth brand refresh process with the help of the Taiji brand group. In the coming weeks and months this process will be finalised with positive implications for Coaches Across Continents, our community partners and participants. Moving into 2014 CAC will be growing, having impact and having fun with our proven concept of using soccer to create social change in communities across the world.