At the same time, other Trust coaches ran a similar mixed programme alongside the girls’ football with the children participating a wide variety of multisport activities from archery to dodgeball, from cricket to football and from team sports to individual challenges.
For all four days, the children were given the opportunity to develop their life skills by working with London based soldiers from the British Army on their ‘Command Task Challenges’. This gave the youngsters the opportunity to talk with the soldiers about life in the Armed Forces and dispel many of their false beliefs. The children learned that soldiers spend very little their time shooting guns and that many had very different trades. One was a postal clerk, another was a dental nurse, two others were members of the Coldstream Guards who perform ceremonial tasks at Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle. Over the four days, the children worked with two soldiers from Kenya, one from the West Indies, one from Bangladesh, one from Belize and one from South London, emphasising the multicultural nature of the modern British Army. The Command Tasks provided challenges where the children solved problem, worked as a team, developed communication skills and worked within a time frame. All skills relevant to both life and sport.
During the latter part of the week, the children were joined by members of the Metropolitan Police Task Force, based in Chadwell Heath and the local Safer Neighbourhood Support Team who joined in with the children’s activities, organised challenging games and answered questions about their life in ‘The Job”.
On Thursday, the group had a very special VVIP visit from Chief Superintendent Karen Findlay who, on her return from annual leave, went out her way to visit May and Bakers to witness the fantastic work being done by her officers, the soldiers, the Trust Coaches and the young people. Ma’am Findlay is not only the Borough Commander responsible for the Task Force across London, but her brief includes the Dog, Mounted and the Marine Sections of the Met across the Capitol. Karen is an outstanding rugby player and captained her beloved Scotland. Having spoken to the children in the morning about her life, the challenges she faced and the opportunities which exist today, she joined in with the kids in their activities later in the day.
The Trust is currently planning to run 4 weeks of similar fun filled activities over the summer holidays (August 2021) at May and Bakers. The activities will include football camps for boys and girls, mixed multi sports, a chance to meet the Daggers First Team and a Training Open Day with the First Team Squad. Once again, we will be supported by members of the Met and the Army across all four weeks.
Further details will be publicised shortly. Check the Daggers Trust Twitter page @daggerstrust or the Trust website www.daggerstrust.com for further details.