Scotland international hockey players Alison Howie and Michael Bremner helped launch this year’s Lead 2014 programme – which will see the number of young people involved since its inception in 2011 surge beyond 50,000.
Howie and Bremner were at the Glasgow National Hockey Centre launch of the programme – a partnership between sportscotland, Youth Sport Trust and Glasgow 2014 –designed to develop the leadership skills of young people.
Secondary pupils are mentored at a one-day conference by university student volunteers in how to plan, organise and manage Commonwealth Games themed sports festivals for their local primary and secondary schools.
In its four years to date, Lead 2014 has now reached all 32 Local Authorities in Scotland, with an incredible 39,659 students, young leaders and school children participating.
This year’s Lead 2014 will focus on what needs to be done for the final countdown of putting on an event and the opening ceremony will feature the Get Scotland Dancin’ project. The programme will be rolled out across University conference dates between 6 February and 26 March.
Using Glasgow 2014 as the catalyst, Lead 2014 will capture young people’s energy and enthusiasm for sport and enable them to become role models in sports leadership as well as seeing the value of volunteering in sport.
Lead 2014 has provided an outstanding platform for young people across Scotland to develop their leadership skills and discussions are already under way about its continuation. The successful peer leadership programme will continue in the same format next year as the country aims to use Glasgow 2014 as a platform to provide a lasting legacy.
David Grevemberg, Glasgow 2014’s Chief Executive, said: “The Lead 2014 programme enjoys an outstanding response from young people and the number of them empowered by it in their communities has grown significantly year on year. Using sport as a platform to promote leadership, volunteering, health and well-being, Lead 2014 instils in the students and pupils a desire to be part of the Games and to become more aware of and involved in the Commonwealth.
“I truly hope we will see many of these young people engage with the various activities around Glasgow 2014 and with other major events in years to come, ensuring a strong and lasting legacy from Lead 2014 and its continuing achievements.”
Stewart Harris, Chief Executive of sportscotland, said: “Volunteers are the lifeblood of Scottish sport, without whom it would struggle to function as it does, which is why creating the next generation of leaders in sport is so important. Lead 2014 has already provided thousands of young people with the opportunity to enhance their skills, as well as helping to build their enthusiasm for the Games. Glasgow 2014 represents a wonderful opportunity for all involved in Scottish sport, and as the Lead 2014 programme continues it will help provide us with a sporting legacy to be proud of.”
John Steele, Chief Executive Officer, Youth Sport Trust , said: “The Lead 2014 programme has been going from strength to strength and it will be an incredible achievement for it to reach more than 50,000 young people this year. With the Commonwealth Games taking place this summer there can be no better time to use this special occasion to engage young people in sport and develop their leadership skills.”
Deanna Lundie, Lead 2014 Frontrunner, aged 20, from Nairn, said: “This will be my third year of involvement in Lead 2014. I believe that volunteering in this event helps with building self-confidence, through interacting with others as well as dealing with difficult and new situations. It means you can help others and enhance your own CV.
“After being involved in Lead 2014, my commitment to volunteering was rewarded when I got the opportunity to work at the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games in both the Athletes’ Village and the Velodrome, an unforgettable experience. Following this, I got selected to represent Scotland at the European Youth and Sport conference in Cyprus where I focused on volunteering and why it was important to people. After being part of Lead 2014, I really wanted to be part of the Commonwealth Games so have combined the two as a pre-Games volunteer helping with Lead 2014.”
In addition to pupil and student education, the programme also offers an interactive workshop for secondary school PE teachers and Active Schools Coordinators.
For more information and Lead 2014 conference dates, visit www.glasgow2014.com/lead2014