NI OLYMPIANS HELP YOUNG PEOPLE LEARN SKILLS FOR SUCCESS THROUGH SPORT
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A group of young people from Belfast received an insight into how the skills required to reach the top in sport can also enhance employability prospects at a unique event held by the National Lottery and the Sports Institute Northern Ireland (SINI).
Double Paralympic Gold Medalist Michael McKillop, Olympic Slalom Canoeist Hannah Craig, and SINI’s Performance Skills Coach and former Irish rugby international Gary Longwell were among those who put youngsters from a number of Lottery-funded organisations through their paces during the session at SINI’s state-of-the-art facilities at the University of Ulster, Jordanstown.
‘Skills for Success through Sport’ allowed young people from the Bytes Project, Include Youth and Opportunity Youth to experience firsthand the training techniques of our elite athletes, participate in team building exercises and receive a nutritious athlete’s lunch.
Jackie O’Sullivan, from the National Lottery, added: “National Lottery funding has been changing lives in Northern Ireland for almost 20 years.
“Our investment provides opportunities for people from all walks of life to fulfill their dreams and reach their potential.
“National Lottery players should be proud of their contribution towards outstanding sporting success in Northern Ireland and the role SINI has played in that. In addition, they also support many projects which equip young people with the necessary skills to improve their employability and life chances.
“The Skills for Success through Sport event is a fantastic example of how the National Lottery is funding a better future for Northern Ireland.”
Peter McCabe, Athlete Services Manager at SINI, said:
“SINI is delighted to be hosting ‘Skills for Success’. Since 2002, with National Lottery funding, we have been providing high level support to Northern Ireland’s top athletes and coaches, and today’s event has given these young people some insight into how we work and what it takes to compete in high performance sport. Sporting Ambassadors like Hannah and Michael are evidence of how hard work and the right attitudes can enable us to achieve our ambitions, and that’s what we have aimed to convey to the young people we’ve met today.”
The National Lottery has provided almost £1 billion in funding to projects in Northern Ireland since 1994.
Sports Institute Northern Ireland has received more than £15 million in National Lottery funding through Sport Northern Ireland.
Each week National Lottery players raise a staggering £33 million towards organisations which provide valuable services in sport, the arts, in heritage and in the community.
For more information on National Lottery funding visit www.lotterygoodcauses.org.uk
Pics for use free of charge from Bill Smyth
Sports Institute NI 1
Double Paralympic gold winner medal Michael McKillop helps Opportunity Youth’s Pearse Devenney and Dean McWilliams get on track for success at an event held by the National Lottery at the Sports Institute Northern Ireland. Young people from National Lottery funded projects across Belfast took part in Skills for Success through Sport, an event designed by the Lottery and SINI to help enhance employability skills.
Sports Institute NI2
Former Irish rugby international and Sports Institute Northern Ireland performance skills coach Gary Longwell with Chris Muir, Tyler Kennedy and Bryan Murray, from the Bytes Project at the National Lottery and SINI Skills for Success Sport event. Young people from National Lottery funded projects across Belfast took part in the initiative designed by the Lottery and SINI to help enhance employability skills.
Sports Institute NI3
Olympic slalom canoeist Hannah Craig (2nd right) switches codes and picks up a camog with Rebecca Beattie from Include Youth and Dana Strong, Opportunity Youth at the National Lottery and Sports Institute Northern Ireland’s Skills for Success Through Sport event. Young people from National Lottery projects across Belfast took part in the initiative designed by the Lottery and SINI to help enhance employability skills. Also pictured is SINI sports psychologist Kellie Fay.