BTC Students Explore South Africa! - Bridgwater & Taunton College

Level 3 Sport and Exercise Science students have just returned from their two week mobility from Gqeberha, South Africa, where they volunteered for the ‘United Through Sport’ charity.

The charity looks to educate and inspire children within the deprived township areas. The students coached hockey, rugby, netball and football in six different primary schools across the townships of New Brighton, Zwide and the Northern Territory. The students were further challenged out of their comfort zones as they delivered maths and English lessons, and an alcohol awareness session within the classrooms.

Towards the end of the mobility, the students organised and ran a multisport tournament where over 240 children from the schools took part in. Students and staff fundraised prior to leaving the UK, to provide trophies and lunches for the children and were able to fund new goals to donate to United Through Sport.


Course Leader and Mobility Lead Jonny Hunt said:


“It’s a pleasure to be able to continue our working partnership with United Through Sport. The mobility was a huge success where our learners have come back humbled, appreciating what they have in the UK after spending two weeks in the townships. They have been able to see the world in a completely different light, enabling them to reflect and experience a culture change that has brought so much value to them. The emotions experienced on the township tour on day 1 inspired the students to plan the most engaging and fun sport and classroom sessions possible. They all took so much pride in their volunteering, wanting to make the most positive and meaningful impact they could in the community. It was fantastic to see and be a part of, and I feel every student fully utilised the opportunity.”


Student Tilly Davis said:


“Having the opportunity to go on this once in a lifetime experience is one that I will never forget. I have made so many incredible memories, ranging from coaching and teaching the children to the cultural activities we did to experience Africa. It was so eye opening for all of us, and seeing how different the townships were made us put 100% effort into the coaching sessions we led, which the children absolutely loved to participate in.”


Student Finlay Koppa said:


“South Africa was a great opportunity and a once in a lifetime experience. It is very eye opening to see the cultural differences and the ways some people live over there and it makes me more and more grateful for the things I have in life. Every day was planned out so well on the itinerary with so many different activities to fully maximise our time in Gqeberha across the 2 weeks. It was really rewarding to see how sport can bring everyone together regardless of backgrounds, and that’s why United Through Sport is such a good charity that brings smiles to the less fortunate. I would do it all again tomorrow!”


International opportunities such as this are a great way for our students to develop and broaden their skillset during education. The students effectively put their coaching skills into practice within schools so they could demonstrate what they have been learning on their course. As the students were immersed into this different culture, they developed new perspectives of environments and fostered a more global mindset. They engaged with students whose first language may not be English which allowed them to develop patience, clarity and sharpen their cross-cultural communication skills.


If you would like to find our more about the college and sport, head over to Sport on our website.

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