Supernovas, a global non-profit initiative launched by inDrive, is seeking dedicated individuals interested in becoming coaches to empower children in sports. Anna Fedorchuk, the head of the Supernovas project, shared insights into the initiative, the qualities they are seeking in coaches, and the motivation behind it.
Tell us more about the project.
Supernovas is an international non-profit football project aimed at benefiting children in small towns and villages by involving them in sports and promoting physical and social development. The project is funded by inDrive, a global mobility and urban services platform based in the United States.
We are searching for individuals who have a genuine love for both children and football and who are willing to train kids on a regular basis. The coach plays a pivotal role in our project, creating a comfortable, safe, and friendly environment.
They inspire a passion for football in children and work for the betterment of the community. Our focus is on fun, safety, and the children's comfort, rather than solely on winning.
Both men and women are welcome to apply as coaches, and prior football experience or professional coaching qualifications are not mandatory. We provide comprehensive training to the selected candidates. What matters is the applicants' interest in football, patience, and ability to communicate effectively with children.
We are looking for coaches who are motivated to make a positive impact on their communities and create better opportunities for children. However, it's important to note that our project upholds certain fundamental values that all coaches must adhere to, such as no shouting at children under any circumstances.
We do not rank or punish kids for mistakes, as these are part of the learning process and life in general. We firmly believe that comparing children with each other is detrimental.
Our coaches are responsible for fostering a friendly atmosphere during training, with an emphasis on the process rather than the outcome.
We teach children how to play football and enjoy it, regardless of whether they become professional players or not. It is essential to find ways to work with each child and highlight the importance of their uniqueness.
This is a paid position, and coaches will receive compensation based on the number of groups they train and the time spent with them.
While we understand that coaching may not be the coaches' primary source of income, we strive to offer a higher hourly salary compared to the average children's football coach in a given country.
From May 5 to June 5, 2023, interested individuals can apply to join the project as coaches through our website. Once applications are reviewed, suitable candidates will be contacted for interviews to further assess their experience, motivation, and training approach. The finalists will undergo additional interviews with our methodologist.
After finalizing our selection of coaches, we will secure sports grounds, purchase the necessary equipment and kits, and establish a schedule. Training will commence, welcoming all interested children to participate.
Considering that working with children entails ensuring their safety, how do you address this concern?
Safety is our top priority. Applicants undergo multiple interviews and undergo security checks. Additionally, we require coaches to undergo mandatory supervision with psychologists. We also establish an open channel for feedback from children and their parents.
What is the current stage of the project?
We have already launched the project in Kazakhstan and are now expanding to other countries. In Ghana, this is our first call for coaches. We encourage individuals to apply and believe that there is immense potential for our initiative here.website: https://supernovas.indrive.com/. How do you train coaches?
We have a specific training approach. As mentioned earlier, children's enjoyment takes precedence over results. We have partnered with I COACH KIDS, a reputable expert in grassroots sports coaching.
They share our philosophy and will provide methodological recommendations and conduct courses for all our coaches. Moving forward, their methodologies will maintain monthly communication with our coaches, assisting in their ongoing development.
How are the participants for the project selected? Are there specific criteria?
In Ghana, we welcome applications from all localities except Accra. Since there are already numerous football schools and academies in the capital, we aim to provide equal opportunities to children, regardless of whether they were born in a big city or a small town.
We recruit children between the ages of 5 and 12 years. However, if a 4-year-old child expresses a desire to participate and joins our training sessions, we won't turn them away.
The upper age limit is determined by the point when children typically engage in more competitive football and enrol in specialized schools or organize matches among themselves.
At this stage, it becomes necessary to form separate teams for girls and boys, in line with FIFA recommendations.
For now, we emphasize inclusivity and welcome both girls and boys to participate. Nationality, religion, and social status hold no significance to us. What truly matters is that children learn openness and embrace diversity.
Why did you choose football as the primary sport?
Football is one of the world's most beloved sports and an excellent platform for learning teamwork. As our project evolves, we will incorporate other sports and activities.
Have you encountered any difficulties in implementing the project so far?
Undoubtedly, challenges have arisen. Initially, we anticipated that securing suitable training venues would be our primary obstacle. However, we have discovered that venues do exist, albeit with variations in quality and condition.
The real challenge lies in finding the right individuals to serve as coaches. People often associate coaches with being strict, demanding, and solely focused on achieving success at any cost.
Additionally, there is sometimes resistance to embracing new and unconventional approaches. Nonetheless, we remain hopeful that the people of Ghana are open to new experiences.
Many potential coaches harbour scepticism, doubting our ability to provide equipment, organize everything, deliver training, and provide salaries. Gaining people's trust has proven challenging.
We have encountered candidates whom we greatly admired but who ultimately withdrew during the final stages. They ceased communication, leaving us wondering, “What happened? Why?”
We believe that as Supernovas become more familiar and fully operational, this distrust will diminish. We urge everyone to view our photos from Kazakhstan, as they serve as proof that everything we promise is indeed real.
What are your plans for development in Ghana and beyond?
At present, we are actively collecting applications from prospective coaches. We anticipate a substantial response and encourage all interested individuals to apply through our website.
We view Ghana as a highly promising country. We aspire to contribute to the development of grassroots football here and enhance the lives of children. Given football's immense popularity in Ghana and the country's abundance of talented players, we aim to provide equal opportunities to all children.
While our primary goal is not to groom professional football players, we would certainly rejoice if their passion for football ultimately propels them to become the next “Black Satellites.”
Moving forward, we intend to expand the project to other countries worldwide. We will employ diverse and engaging approaches to involve children and adults in football and various other sports activities.
Why did inDrive undertake this project?
Challenging injustice is at the core of inDrive's mission and DNA. This extends beyond our business ventures to encompass our non-commercial initiatives.
We actively seek out areas where injustice prevails and strive to provide fairer, more equitable opportunities. Offering children in small communities the chance to participate in sports for pure enjoyment aligns with our principles of fairness.
If you had to summarize the essence of Supernovas, what would it be?
At the initiation of I COACH KIDS training, they emphasize that the coach's primary objective is to ignite a deep love for football in the hearts of children and help them carry
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