• The Half Year in Review

    June 11, 2014. The FIFA Men’s World Cup is upon us and Coaches Across Continents has teams of coaches working with local partners in Kenya, Cameroon, Zimbabwe, and starting shortly in four locations in Brazil. Even with all this activity founder Nick Gates also has found time to speak tomorrow morning for 25 minutes on Sirius radio on the Wharton Business network, channel 111 (Thursday, June 12th, 8:00 AM EST).

    With the world focused on the showcase event of the world’s greatest game, it seems like an opportune time to reflect on the real power of sport and how Coaches Across Continents is using football to create self-directed learners all over the world to educate about conflict resolution including social inclusion, female empowerment including gender equity; health & wellness including HIV/AIDS behavioral change, and life skills.

    One of the biggest stories of the year is our partnership with Chevrolet FC and Manchester United and their “What Do You #PlayFor?” campaign. This will be a two-year, ten-program, multi-country initiative that sees revitalized football pitches and sport for social impact education for local organizations all over the world. The first two “What Do You #PlayFor?” programs of the year were fantastic. Videos have been released detailing the work of Rumah Cemara (Indonesia) and their use of soccer to combat stigma against HIV/AIDS. In total these videos have garnered over 7.3 million views! Within the next month another set of videos will be released regarding our latest training in this campaign with fellow former Beyond Sport Winner Beyond the Ball in Little Village, Chicago, USA.

    This year has also seen our coaches on the ground with our Hat Trick Initiative partners in Haiti, Colombia, Mexico, Sierra Leone, Nigeria, Indonesia, Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania (including Zanzibar), Cameroon, Zimbabwe, and the USA. Overall CAC is projecting that we will conclude 2014 having worked on field with our partners in 28 countries with an estimated 75 local organizations using sport for social impact. This will educate over 3,000 local leaders who will further impact 250,000 children. Even when CAC is not on the ground with our partners we are thrilled to see their progress and work with them through on-line resources. Recently our curriculum was adopted in schools in Nepal and Tanzania. On March 8th, our female empowerment games were played by our partner programs for International Women’s Day. CAC has also signed on with Peace One Day for their One Day One Goal initiative when our games will be played by organizations in over 130 countries on Peace Day, September 21st. The final global day that we support with our global network will be World AIDS Day on December 1st.

    Off field in 2014 Coaches Across Continents has spoken at top events including the Next Step Conference in India, the NSCAA Convention in Philadelphia, Reach Out to Asia’s “Empower” Conference in Qatar, and the Hofstra Soccer Conference in New York where our Chief Executive Strategist, Brian Suskiewicz, had the great privilege of speaking with Pelé.

    Furthermore CAC is one of six organizations selected by UNICEF to develop a global child rights policy concerning children in sport. We are proud that in 2014 every participant of our coaching courses has had a practical and locally relevant Child Rights education session. Off field has also seen the launch of a new website, new branding and logos with the phenomenal work of the Taiji Group, and a more focused mission towards creating self-directed learners over the course of our Hat Trick Initiative.

    It is for all these reasons that Coaches Across Continents is the global leader in sport for social impact. Coaches Across Continents will continue to push forward as the global leader in sport for social impact as we continue our mission of enabling communities to create lasting social change through sport. As we move forward, we are working towards our vision of realizing the day when all governments, municipalities, schools and communities have the skills to use sport as a social impact tool and make the choice to do so.

    If you or your organization want to get involved or support Coaches Across Continents, please contact us at or find the information you are looking for on our new-look website, built by the Taiji Group!

     

    Pelé gets a chance to meet Coaches Across Continents Chief Executive Brian Suskiewicz. (photo credit Zack Lane, Hofstra University)

    Pelé gets a chance to meet Coaches Across Continents Chief Executive Brian Suskiewicz. (photo credit Zack Lane, Hofstra University)

    Coaches Across Continents Communications Strategist Nora Dooley makes a friend in Haiti

    Coaches Across Continents Communications Strategist Nora Dooley makes a friend in Haiti

    Ginan (center) is the star of the new Chevrolet FC video highlighting the partnership with Coaches Across Continents

    Ginan (center) is the star of the new Chevrolet FC video highlighting the partnership with Coaches Across Continents

     

  • 2013: On The Field Review

    1235384_520071574742260_2001433417_nJanuary 2, 2014.  We have a theory that someone at Coaches Across Continents is always awake and working.  Not just because our senior staff resides in the UK, Belgium, Hawaii, and the mainland USA, which spans eleven time zones, but also because we were on the road so often running programs on FOUR CONTINENTS in 2013.  Our staff is often awake at odd hours from jet lag and from constant communication with our 51 PARTNER PROGRAMS in 19 COUNTRIES.  For those of you who are wondering – those countries were (alphabetically): Brazil, Cambodia, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Colombia, Haiti, India, Indonesia, Israel, Jamaica, Ghana, Kenya, Liberia, Namibia, Nepal, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, and Zimbabwe.

    1240558_515175748565176_1430260826_nThe effect of working internationally is the IMPACT we have on individuals, communities, and countries.  Our Sport for Social Impact curriculum CREATES SELF-DIRECTED LEARNERS, enabling the individuals we work with to identify local problems and ultimately solve these issues in a locally relevant manner. By empowering communities CAC is helping to enact positive change on a truly global level. Although we have only completed our fifth year on the field, this year our Hat Trick Initiative taught over 2,100+ COACHES AND COMMUNITY LEADERS.  These coaches and leaders have been working tirelessly throughout the year to impact OVER 162,000 CHILDREN using our Sport for Social Imipact games, and striving to create the next generation of free-thinkers. Our rapidly growing team firmly believes in transcending the boundaries of education laid down by long-standing traditions. We are passionate about learning, we are passionate about football, and we are passionate about combining these forces to redefine the way the world views the education of children and the development of communities. Alongside our incredible partners from the far reaches of the world, we revel in challenging outdated customs, breaking down unjust societal norms, celebrating our rights, and doing it all on the football pitch, whether green grass, field turf, brown dust, or pure concrete, united by our love for the beautiful game.

    IMG_5109As we continue to build on the work we do around the world in sport for social impact and self-directed learning, we remain extremely conscious of PRIORITIZING LOCAL SUSTAINABILITY. In 2013 we launched our COMMUNITY IMPACT COACH (CIC) PROGRAM, which facilitates collaboration among the communities we work in. Leaders from our partner organizations have the opportunity to apply to become a CIC and travel with our teams to other communities within their country, their continent, and even globally. With this program we have witnessed CICs thrive in different environments, out of their comfort zone, where they are able to coach CAC games in settings foreign to their own and gain a greater understanding of the various ways in which sport can be used to educate. Our Community Impact Coaches are not only able to connect with other coaches who share their passion for community development, but are also given the chance to inspire others to become CICs, to travel and learn from different cultures, and return to their own community with greater perspective and knowledge about our shared efforts in the field of sport for development.

    IMG_0557Our first CIC was Coach Nico who worked in Ghana and Tanzania.  He was followed by Community Impact Coaches Charles “Oti” (Kenya), Salim and Godfrey “Moogy” (Uganda), Corrie, Danver and Bulelani (South Africa), and our last CIC was Homkant (India).  These coaches came into their own as ROLE MODELS, enhancing our work on the field far beyond the limits of geography, and we are more than pleased to be able to offer such opportunities to truly amazing leaders. This initiative was a highlight of our 2013 programs, setting the stage for more success, more collaboration, and more participating coaches in the future. In 2014, we hope to have CICs in over half of our partner program countries, starting later this month when we visit Haiti.

    1461455_552087681540649_2024566814_nWhile the CAC “Empire” is always awake and working towards creating sustainable sport for social impact programs globally, we are also aware that our work cannot be done without the 28 COACHES and VOLUNTEERS who spent 17,536 HOURS working ON THE FIELD with communities this past year.  They are the backbone of our organization and allow change to happen on a worldwide scale.  To everyone who traveled with CAC to any one of our 19 countries of operations… THANK YOU!

    We hope that if you are interested you will contact us and volunteer your time in 2014 or support our many other initiatives through personal or corporate efforts.  Have a great 2014 everyone!

    IMG_6970