Kingston College received a special visit from ParalympicsGB sitting volleyball captain Rob Richardson after winning an Active Colleges competition.
Active Colleges is Sport England’s £25 million National Lottery fund which aims to help more college students play sport. It looks to encourage an increase in regular participation (at least 30 minutes per week) in sport by further education students across the country.
Kingston College won a visit from Rob Richardson after the College Sport Maker, who is also funded by Sport England until 2017, submitted a fantastic story to Sport England about the KC Active Inclusive Multi-Sport project. The winning project focused on providing regular professional sports coaching for over 40 students with additional needs, by accessing funding streams and partnership working with Fulham and Chelsea FA.
Rob is one of Sport England’s Sporting Champions – a team of current and retired elite athletes, many of whom competed at London 2012. He visited the College’s North Kingston site where he undertook a motivational speech, sitting volleyball master class and nutritional workshop for over 40 students.
In his capacity as a Sporting Champion, Rob was able to use his inspiring memories of London 2012 to captivate his audience, sharing details on his match highlights and the all-important Olympic Village food hall! The students were thrilled to participate in Rob’s master class which for many of them was their first experience of sitting volleyball. It is hoped that this visit, alongside building in-college sport and signposting to local community sport clubs, will help students create a sporting habit for life.
Rob said: “I have thoroughly enjoyed my visit to Kingston College today. The aim of Active Colleges is to increase the number of students in FE Colleges taking part regularly in sport regularly so it is something I’m very passionate about and was glad to see the developments being made at Kingston College.”
“I’m hopeful that through sharing my experiences of London 2012 and competing at elite level, I have inspired all the young people in attendance to sustain their sports participation.”
Sport England’s Head of Further Education Katie Mitchell said: “The Active Colleges programme is designed to help students who wouldn’t naturally consider themselves ‘sporty’ find and enjoy activity while they are at college.
“Sporting Champions visits will help further motivate and inspire these students by bringing their enthusiasm and passion for sport and highlighting the benefits that it can bring to the winners of these Active Colleges prizes and help ensure Active Colleges is as successful as possible.”
Kingston College will continue to apply for external funding and work in partnership with National Governing Bodies of sport to help students migrate into a community sport setting and sustain their sporting habit for life.