NSPCC calls on parents in Kent to help children reach their sporting potential
- NSPCC’s Child Protection in Sport Unit hosts its annual Parents in Sport Week from 1 to 7 October 2018
- Kent FA is lending its support to Parents in Sport Week.
The NSPCC’s Child Protection in Sport Unit (CPSU) is highlighting the important role parents play in youth sport through its annual awareness raising event – Parents in Sport Week.
The aim of Parents in Sport Week is to encourage parents and sports clubs to work together to help children reach their full potential. It is also an opportunity for sports clubs to reach out to parents who may be less engaged and get them on board.
Parents play a hugely pivotal role in encouraging and supporting their child’s participation, success and enjoyment when playing sport. So it is essential that sports clubs communicate regularly with parents so that both coach and parent work towards the same goals.
Anne Tiivas, Service Head at CPSU, explained: “We know parents play a critical role in youth sport. In fact, without parental support and involvement – from washing kits to the taxi of mum and dad – it’s likely that youth sport would cease to exist.
“We also know that without parents’ involvement in their child’s sport, children are less likely to achieve and sustain a lifelong interest in sport and adopt a healthy lifestyle.
“Parents in Sport Week is important because it encourages parents to make sure they are positively influencing their child’s involvement and wellbeing in sport and recognise their role in keeping them safe. It also encourages clubs to ensure they are engaging with parents.”
Luke Baker, Football Development Officer for Youth Football at Kent FA said, “our parents are a key component in making sure our game is one which children can love. A simple reassuring comment or uplifting smile can change how a child feels when they are playing.”
Katie Whitmore who leads on Respect at Kent FA added, “Sometimes parents underestimate their value as role models on our touchlines. Young players will often look at their behaviour and mirror it. It is essential that they are copying respectful behaviour.”
This Parents in Sport Week, parents are being asked to:
- Ensure that sports clubs provide the information they need so they can make informed choices about the clubs or activities they send their child to.
- Look at their behaviour to make sure they are a positive influence. Advice is available on the CPSU website to support parents in this.
To lend their support, sports clubs can:
- Make sure they tell parents what they can do if they have a concern, such as calling the NSPCC helpline (0808 800 5000).
- Be open with parents about what their child needs from them in relation to their behaviour.
- Use our resources to engage with parents, help them to support their child and raise awareness of the impact positive parental involvement can have on youth sport.
For more information about Parents in Sport Week, and for downloadable resources for both parents and clubs, visit the CPSU website.