Saturday, March 27, 2010

GUBOG - Give us back our game

Here's an admirable concept. It's parent dependent for initiation and the principles would work in any sport. If you know someone involved in kids' sport, send them a link.
By Ben Fenton,, Jan 8/07
Football's pushy parents shown the red card
Give Us Back Our Game, a grassroots campaign to reclaim children's football from the tyranny of pushy parents and overbearing coaches has taken off by word of mouth. [It] aims to revive the spirit of playing on the streets, now regarded as too dangerous, but which lay at the heart of football for earlier generations.
The basic aim of the organisers, Paul Cooper, a coach based in Gloucestershire, and Rick Fenoglio, a sports scientist from Manchester, is to rid children's football of its rigid format of seven-against-seven games in smart kit, hectored by foul-mouthed parents and overseen by obsessive coaches and punctilious referees.
"Football is no longer beautiful for our kids: it's ugly."

From the Give Us Back Our Game website!

We are advocates for children and their right to play and have access to age-appropriate, positive sport. These rights are guaranteed by the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child
(David, 2005) and have been ratified by 192 countries.

Give Us Ba ck Our Game (GUBOG) is also a successful and proven method for delivering children’s sp orts and activities. The GUBOG Approach is a practical 10 – point guide which helps practitioners e nsure that children are always engaged, always having fun and always learning new skills.

Through our campaigns, events, workshops, magazine and website, we influence policy and help others see how developmental and beneficial children’s sport truly can be….and how to organise and deliver programmes which place the rights of the child over the expectations or demands of adults. GUBOG is fun!

Give Us Back Our Game began as an emergent grassroots football campaign in the UK in 2006 but has since broadened its scope to include all sports….such is the breadth and severity of issues facing children across the sporting spectrum.

The goalposts of Give Us Back Our Game are immovable.

We work to:
  1. Provide and promote for children the highest quality sporting and activity experience possible – an experience where they are empowered to become independent and active learners and develop a lifelong love of physical activity, sport and health;
  2. Increase participation and reduce drop-out in sport;
  3. Help children to achieve their personal and/or sporting potential;
  4. Connect the dots between childhood, sport, play, physical activity and physical education.
Give Us Back Our Game was launched by Paul Cooper, a grass roots football coach in Cirencester, UK and Rick Fenoglio, an American sport scientist at Manchester Metropolitan University, UK. Since then, the programme has been highlighted in over 200 media outlets and been delivered in at least a dozen other countries, including the USA, The Philippines, India, Sweden, Canada and Peru.

So, if you’re a sporting parent, a youth coach, a sports administrator, a volunteer or simply someone who cares about the future of children and the effect of their childhood experiences….
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