Spartans launch new Active Wellbeing programme

Junior members of the City of Derry Spartans and coaches Bridgeen Byrne and Martina McCafferty pictured at the launch of the new Athlete Wellbeing Programme in the Guildhall.
Junior members of the City of Derry Spartans and coaches Bridgeen Byrne and Martina McCafferty pictured at the launch of the new Athlete Wellbeing Programme in the Guildhall.

ONE OF the city’s top sports clubs is pioneering a brand new initiative for its young athletes with a focus on wellbeing.

City of Derry Spartans, in conjunction with Derry Strabane District Council’s 2020 Everybody Active Awards, is delighted to announce details of their new Athlete Wellbeing Programme.

The Active Wellbeing Programme is designed to build the emotional health, confidence and self-belief of 48 young people aged 10-17 to improve their participation and performance in sport.

The brainchild of Spartans’ coaches Bridgeen Byrne and Martina McCafferty, the programme will start later this month and run until March 2019.

A total of 12 two hour sessions will be provided by a life coach to 48 youngsters and 10 coaches. But it’s not just athletes attached to the club who will benefit from the programme. Young girls and athletes with a disability will

also be targeted under this exciting new programme.

The coaches will work with a Life Coach for the duration of the event; developing the skills which will enable them to deliver the programme on an ongoing basis.

At the launch Bridgeen noted that: “being involved in sport is more than just physical activity. Meeting the physical, social and emotional needs of our young people will go in some ways to ensure our young people stay happy.”

Personal Goals

Pol Og, 16, and a current junior member of the local athletics club sees the new intitiative as an opportunity to try something new: “This is a really great opportunity for me and my friends to try something new,” he said. “Athletes, as you know, need to be highly self-motivated and willing to go the extra mile to get the results we want. This programme is going to offer us great ideas and advice about our wellbeing, most particularly how to set personal goals and review these regularly, something that is very important for athletes.”

As well as working with a life coach, the young people on the programme will also receive mentoring from inspirational local woman Hannah Shields, a distinguished member of City of Derry Spartans Club who has made it to the top of Mount Everest.

Tess Cope, a businesswoman and founder of leadership development organisation The Transformation Agency, will also be on hand to provide inspiration.

Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council Cllr John Boyle launching the programme said: “I am honoured as Mayor to officially launch details of this exciting programme aimed at encouraging young athletes to become more

focused on their well-being through their participation in sport.

“Projects like this are imperative in encouraging young people to focus on their social and emotional needs as well as their physical health. I fully support the work being done by everyone involved in delivering this very worthy project and wish everyone taking part every success.”

The new programme is being funded by Derry City & Strabane District Council and will seek to recruit young people to take part in the days and weeks ahead.