Kristina worked with the Jack Kane Community Centre, until early 2014. She has now flown off to America.

I was involved in some local volunteering work in relation to sport as I was wanted to gain as much experience as I could in working with young people in sport. I wasn’t very good academically at school though I always knew that sport was something that I was good at and wanted to do as a career, so I got involved in everything that came my way. I became a Sports Ambassador at school and it was through this role that I heard about the opportunity for a young person to become employed at the Friday night service at the Jack Kane Community Centre. I thought that this position sounded amazing and such a great opportunity.

The first night I started I really enjoyed it and knew this was for me, although I was shadowing other staff this was good as I got to know the service and how things worked, I also couldn’t wait to go myself. Everyone made me feel so welcome, especially all the other young people, who for the first few weeks did think that I had joined the service!

I started doing a lot of different sports in the hall with young people. This was different because as I am female, previously it was the boys and male staff who had done these activities. Through leading these activities it encouraged other young females to get more involved in physical activities and sports which was really rewarding for them and for me. I do think that having a young female role model in the staff team supported their participation.

I’ve learnt so much working at the Jack Kane Community Centre, about challenging behaviours and attitudes of some young people and to question young people and provide educational discussions which open and challenge their view points. I hope that through this young people learn what is right and wrong for them, and they grow as individuals whom are not only more physically healthy but also emotionally too .

I think that I’ve changed for the better as a person, I am more confident and also question and challenge things throughout my life. The in house training that has also been provided at the Jack Kane Community Centre has been amazing as I had never had this opportunity before and it has really supported my personal and professional development especially with progressing a career with young people and sport.

For the future I Am going to have a career either as a P.E. Teacher or in community sports development – this is my passion and what I want to do and am waiting to hear back from university applications on these.

It’s also been rewarding supporting other young females to get more involved in local sports out with the Friday group and in the wider community. One of the young females whom attends the Friday service is now going to volunteer alongside me out with the centre, providing football coaching to other local young people as well as progress in further education.

I’ve always felt supported by the team here at the Jack Kane Community Centre, my experience here has not always been easy, it’s been challenging and rewarding, and the funding through the Robertson Trust has made this happen.
I’ve never felt dread about coming to work here, why would I when I have a job that I enjoy so much and inspire other young people to take on new opportunities – thank you.