Meet the Coach: Simon James

1. Who are you, where are you from, how long have you been involved with Kick London, and what is your role?

I’m Simon and I live in the beautiful town of Croydon (Absolutely love living there). I only started working for Kick in September 2016 and am heading up our mentoring and doing some PE lessons as well.

2. What are your favourite sports, teams, affiliations, and such like?

I love to watch any sport really (including last summer when I had a lot of time on my hands and getting really into the Kabaddi premier league) and will give the majority a go as well! Football is my main sport purely because that was the main sport at my school. I tend to follow a team in most sports as well including most American sports but Arsenal is the one in football.

3. How do you come to be a part of the Kick London family?

I’ve known about Kick London for a long time as others from my church have worked there for years! I never thought I would end up working here but our CEO, Joe Lowther was my head of department at my old job and him as well as our Quality manager Hans who i also worked with in my old job just gave me an offer I couldn’t refuse at a time in my life where I really needed to move on. God really opened a door for me to come to Kick London perfectly!!

4. What has been your best highlight while working for Kick London?

It has to be the mentoring as I get to work with some amazing young people. Overall just meeting and talking to any of the students in my schools has been great. I have also been slightly surprised by how much I’ve enjoyed doing assemblies!!

5. What is the funniest thing a child has ever said to you while working for Kick London?

I was running an after school club for some year 1 and 2 students and one came up to me and said “are you in year 6 cos you’re really big”. It was the most serious look I have ever seen on his face and the first time in a long time I have been mistaken for being 11 years old. He also got really upset when he found out school didn’t finish at year 6…………

6. As a Christian, how does Kick London fit in with your personal missional heart? Why is Kick London important for the church?

I have a heart to serve young people and to support them in as many ways as I can (I have a particular passion for education and the education system) and Kick London allows me to working in schools doing mentoring and with an emphasis on faith as well, the perfect combo for me.

7. Do you think Jesus have engaged with sport?

YES! But not for a winner and a loser to be honest but as its amazing fellowship for Christians and a great way to witness to people (we all change whilst playing sport!).

8. What is your personal sporting highlight, either for you or the team/person you support?

I’ve been blessed to have so many great experiences ranging from going to the Olympics in London, going to Yankee Stadium, seeing Becks score from the half way line at Selhurst against Wimbledon but my biggest highlight was going to the Camp Nou to see Barca play. From a personal perspective just being able to play sport after so many injuries is a highlight enough for me!!!

9. What is the most exciting thing that could happen in a regular working day that would be a highlight of your year?

That I get to talk about Jesus to any young person I meet and them following him as their Lord and Saviour.

10. Finally, can you provide a picture of you involved in your sport, either an action shot, you in your team’s kit, at a game supporting your team, you holding a cup or trophy, etc.

Simon Golf

 

 

 

Chat with the Chairman

In this week’s feature, we took a moment to speak to Chairman of Kick London, Matt King.

How long have you been involved in Kick London, and what have your roles been?

I first got involved in Kick London when Tom Rutter and the founding Trustees presented on Kick London at a men’s breakfast at West Wickham and Shirley Baptist church about 13 years ago and I thought “what an amazing concept” – engaging with young people on their agenda – sport – and in doing sharing love and role modelling through the behaviours, messaging and attitudes of our coaches.

Around this time, there was a fatal stabbing of a young person in Shirley.  The breakfast presentation and this violence motivated a number of us at the breakfast to launch Kick London in Croydon to respond to the needs within the borough.  Shortly after that, a local trust provided us with 3 years of funding to employ Hans Sims, our first Kick London coach and development officer in Croydon.  From there Kick London started to grow in partnership with Tom in Richmond.

Initially we ran Kick London in Croydon, as a branch of Kick London, before I became a Trustee of Kick London.  Then in 2015 I become Chair following the sad and early passing of our previous Chair, Alan Latham.  I love working with Joe Lowther (CEO), the other Trustees and the wider staff team to develop and build Kick London.

2. On a personal level, what are your favourite sports?

Having recently turned 40 (well over 5 years ago now!), I “enjoy” trying to keep fit. I genuinely enjoy cycling and I lead a cycling group at my church – 7.30am every Sunday morning if you would like to join us for a 20 mile cycle around the Surrey country.  We have done a few special trips – cycling around the Isle of Wight, to Paris, to Brussels and regular trips down to Brighton.

Matt cycle

As I passed the 40 years mark, I trained and ran the London Marathon raising money for a Kick London academy coach who died from bowel cancer before the age of 40.   I watch most sports on TV and follow from a distance my local football team – Crystal Palace.

3. Why do you feel sport is important for the church?

Sport is loved by many young people and we know that it has holistic benefit for all us – physical, mental, emotional and social benefits.  We also believe that it can help  develop personal values and behaviours such as teamwork, putting each other first and forgiveness and therefore we have found it a great way to help young people consider and develop spiritually too.

Less than 15% of young people go to church once month but many more young people regularly engage in sport.  So if we want to help young people consider faith and the spiritual aspect of life, we need to engage on their agenda and on their territory and not expect them to come to us.  Therefore it is a great way to engage with young people and help them develop physically, socially, emotionally and as a Christian organisation, consider spiritual issues through the work of our coaches.

4. On a missional level, why do you feel Kick London have an important role to play in the church?

If 15% of young people come into our churches once a month to engage on the spiritual dimension of life – this means that 85% of young people do not.

Our passion at Kick London is to engage with the 85% of young people who may never have the opportunity to experience and understand the relevance of faith in their lives.  Through the work, role modelling, love and care of our coaches, young people have the an opportunity to explore in a sensitive and relevant way Christian values and the role of faith in the way they live.

5. Do you believe Jesus would have played football? Who would he have supported?

Throughout the New Testament part of the bible, we see Jesus engaging relevantly with people.  Wherever people were and in what ever they were doing, Jesus was there and engaging with them.  Whether it was at a meal, at a wedding, at a well collecting water or helping people to fish.  Jesus was there and involved.  So I believe if Jesus was physically here today, I believe he would have strolled up to a football pitch or a netball court and engaged with people as they played.  So yes, today he would have been at the sport’s fields/courts with people and I believe he would have got involved and joined in.

Who would he have supported?  Probably not “Crystal Palace” – as a King – he tended not to conform to what was expected and King’s are expected to be in Palaces – so I don’t expect he would have been at “the Palace”! 😉

6. How has your involvement with Kick London impacted you personally?

Kick London keeps me active and fresh on the agenda which I believe was left to us all in the Bible through the  Great Commandment “to love each other” and the Great Commission “to go and make disciples”.

That is at the heart of Kick London and it has kept me grappling with what that means today.   It keeps me learning and trying to improve the relevance and effectiveness of the Great Commission and Commandment for young people in 2017 – we need to keep learning and improving.

7. How is Kick London different now to when you were first involved?

When we started we engaged with young people in one academy and a couple of schools.  We now engage with over 7,000 young people every week, across many London Boroughs and Schools.

We see more young people’s lives being transformed – we saw that when we started too – but now we are able to do see it happen more often.

We have a team that has grown from 1 person (Tom) to over 35 employed staff and many volunteers.

We have grown the diversity of sports from football, to dance, to cricket and the whole PE curriculum.

We have grown our income from £30k per year to over £550k per year.

We were the smallest sports based Christian ministry in the UK and we are now in the top 2.

We have an excellent CEO in Joe Lowther who has built and leads a great team.

8. What do you believe is next in the Kick London adventure?

More of the same, but with a heart and a vision to do it better and bigger…

… better – improving the quality of what we are seeking to do and therefore improve the quantity and quality of transformational outcomes which makes a lasting difference to their lives and

…  bigger – engaging with more young people, in more schools and other institutions, in more London Boroughs, and then across the UK and then Internationally.

The other challenge that we have own our hearts is diversity.  What about engagement with those with special needs and disabilities?  One of our aims is inclusivity, are we really 100% inclusive – we want to be.

9. What is your dream for the future of Kick London?

I would like to see a Kick London coach working in every school in the UK.

In England alone, that’s over 16,000 schools, so that will require over 5,000 coaches.  That isn’t going to be achieved overnight but it’s dream that helps drive me on and build on 35 coaches and 7,000 young people – but we have a long way to go.

10. What have been some of the highlights during your involvement with Kick London?

I have enjoyed the hard work of day-to-day engagement over the years with Trustees and staff in the running and oversight of the organisation.  And then every now and again, its great to sit back and reflect on some of the highlights, which have included…

The 10 young people who made a commitment of faith at a recent Kick London academy.

The “family” atmosphere and care amongst the staff team.

Participating in last year’s Kick London triathlon.

Seeing the belief that Trusts and funders continue to place in what Kick London is achieving and generating significant investment income for Kick London.

Reading the quotes and citations from head teachers, young people and coaches on the difference Kick London has made in schools and lives as part of our annual evaluation.

 

You Sunk My Battleship! (Aspiration)

Battleship

September is a month where anybody associated with schools is looking ahead at another year of development for themselves or a child they know. Many are looking at what they could possibly achieve. They are planning for something better than they currently know and their hope of achievement signals their aspirational intent.

My Aspiration for the year is to help my mentees reach their potential and achieve their aspirations. Naturally I prepare by reading their referrals and considering mentoring methods…

But there is something missing …

So, it’s 11pm on a Sunday evening and I am raiding my loft looking for the games of my childhood that might inspire the next generation of children.

Then it hits me in the face… Battleships literally fell off the self and hit me between the eyes. This game could be the perfect way to get young people to understand targets and goals. What if two ships were removed. What if the remaining three ships, resembled the goals we have for ourselves – the goal for today (the destroyer – smallest ship), the goal for the month of September (the Submarine), The goal for the next year or when we grow up (if we ever decide to!) (the Aircraft Carrier). The hope we have in battleships is that our ships (or in this case goals) remain intact and unaffected by the enemy.

This then goes beyond a game of battleships and becomes a game of seeking to discover the goals of the person opposite and the kind of things that might destroy/ damage their chances of achieving those goals. The kinds of things that start to make us give up hope of achieving our goals. Hope in what can be achieved keeps us aspirational, when hopelessness leaves us unmotivated and uninspired through an overwhelming feeling of sunkenness.

One mentee (who for safeguarding sake will be called Billy) has the aspiration of becoming a world-famous runner or boxer and can identify the goals needed to get him to that place. Billy can be described as aspirational, when another mentee (George) struggles to aspire to complete a goal even in his next lesson. However, both are in danger of being sunk.

For Billy’s aspiration is wrapped up in the opinions of other people. There are extremely successful boxers and runners who aren’t world famous. Iwan Thomas is a European Gold medallist in the 400 metres but it took him starving on an island in the Pacific Ocean with Bear Grylls, before I could recognise who he was. You could argue that he was more famous when he won his medal in 1998 but that simply means that unless Billy reaches the heights of Usain Bolt or appears in a variety of TV shows, his achievement of his aspiration is likely to be short lived or remain unachieved. A shorter-term goal of his was to lose weight because of the way he looked in the mirror. Billy made me realise that whilst it is great to be aspirational, it can also be damaging if what we aspire to achieve creates negativity.

What if Billy aspired to being successful rather than world famous? This success could be qualified and the achievement basked in. What if Billy aimed to become fitter to make playing sports more enjoyable, rather than losing weight to be aesthetically pleasing? What would be the benefit emotionally if he had positive aspirations rather than negative aspirations?

In asking myself these questions, to help Billy, I was forced to face my own aspirations. I aspire to be valued by people in my life, I aspire to lose weight to become aesthetically pleasing to myself and others (and truthfully always have), and I aspire to be a better version of myself in a year’s time than I am now. People, and their opinions, come and go, weight is gained and lost, and if I am always wanting to be better, then how can I ever be happy with how I am now? These aspirations. The hope of achieving these goals, has led me to many a dark hour and many negative decisions.

Then comes the stark realisation than none of these aspirations are what God wants for my life or anybody else’s life. God did not make human kind in order that we be valuable and pleasing to each other. God did not make human kind so that we should sit in the dark oppressed by the expectations and pressures of this world. No… as Paul writes:

“You are all children of the light and children of the day. We do not belong to the night or to the darkness. So then, let us not be like others, who are asleep, but let us be awake and sober. For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk, get drunk at night. But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, putting on faith and love as a breastplate, and the hope of salvation as a helmet. For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ.” – 1 Thessalonians 5:5-9

Paul writes about the day when Jesus will return and the difference between those who are saved and those who are not in a relationship with the living God. But this theme extends to how to live life. On that day, what will be your most important achievement? How will your six pack look in comparison to the light of Christ? Will it matter? Will fame save any person? Will money buy a Lamborghini spaceship that can reach heaven?

No, the most important aspiration is achieving a loving relationship with Jesus Christ. As a result, we should set ourselves goals that strengthen this relationship. If you need a place to start, Jesus (in Matthew 22: 37-38) gives us two important goals:

“’Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’”

It is time for me to go and reassess my aspirations. Which of your aspirations need adjusting to result in positive decisions and goals? Which of your aspirations align with God’s hope for your life?

Peter Brooks

Sports Coach & Mentor | Kick London

Kick London Team Triathlon 2017 Review

The Team Triathlon was a challenge that Kick London fully embraced; one which epitomises the very word ‘Team’.

On Saturday 10th June, Kick London dared to take on an Olympic Distance Triathlon in Teams of Three. Friends and Family, Staff and Trustees were all part of this Team effort. A total of over 50 participants.

Some being brave (others say crazy!) taking on all three disciplines whilst others completing at least one discipline including a 1.5k Swim, 40k Cycle and finished with a 10k Run.

All of our efforts were completed with one vision in mind ‘To see young people’s lives transformed with God’s love through Sport’. The Team Triathlon formed Kick London’s primary fundraising campaign in which the money raised supports us in our vision to reaching more communities across London and seeing stories of lives transformed.

The day Kicked off with the Swim Briefings at Pools on the Park in Richmond. None other than Joe Lowther got us underway with a prayer, and a much needed one at that! Meanwhile, the triathletes had their own briefing as they prepared for the challenge in front of them!

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So it was time for the 1.5k Swim to begin. With glorious sunshine, the 33m outdoor pool proved to be a popular option with Kick London taking over a number of lanes with what can only be described as some ‘interesting’ swimming strokes! The 1.5k Swim was a huge success and we all survived with no armbands to be seen!!!

As part 1 was complete, the Triathletes grabbed their towels and dashed to grab their cycling gear. However, we can’t progress without recognising Ross Cursitter’s unbelievable efforts in racing to a time of 27.09 minutes!

So the 40k Cycle got underway at Richmond Park, Richmond Gate to be precise. A gruelling 3.5 laps of Richmond Park’s toughest laps faced us. Highlights include Tom and Michelle Rutter’s tandem efforts…. absolute heroes! With the road bikes and mountain bikes setting off at the same time, I certainly know which bike had the advantage on this surface…. road bikes!!!! Each Cyclist got over the hills and made it through. Neil Brewster did this in fine fashion clocking an impressive time of 1 hour 33 minutes to claim the fastest 40k Cycle time.

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Whilst the Cyclists crossed the finish line the runners braced themselves for their 10k Run. This would be two 5k laps from Richmond Gate to Richmond Gate. The runners got off to a flying start as the sun beat down on us. By this point the triathletes were tiring, or maybe that was just me… and I’m not sure the word ‘tired’ even comes close to describing how I truly felt! At least it seemed that way as the fresh faced runners cruised past my tiresome efforts.

The finish line was in sight and so were the 10k runners. Whether participants crossed over line like gazelles (Phil Coales – 37.14 minutes) or whether they stumbled across the line, our vision remained our motivation ‘to see young people’s lives transformed’.

And there it was, the finish line. With each participant cheered on to the very end, the Team environment grew stronger and stronger.

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The Team effort is reflected in some stats for you:
As a Team, we Swam over 33km!
As a Team, we Cycled over 880km!
As a Team we Ran over 340km!
That’s a total of 1253km in one afternoon!!!

After a much needed rest we gathered ourselves and headed to the Roebuck Pub overlooking the beautiful Richmond Hill on a fine summers evening. A presentation evening followed which was a chance to celebrate everyone’s incredible efforts. In typical Kick London style, this was a real time of connecting and gathering as a Team.

The triathlon efforts were completed, the fundraising campaign was well underway but the vision is alive and growing.

You can contribute in supporting us in achieving our vision by giving via the link below:

http://m.virginmoneygiving.com/mt/uk.virginmoneygiving.com/charity-web/charity/displayCharityCampaignPage.action?charityCampaignUrl=teamtriathlon&un_jtt_redirect

Event Video:

 

Blog by Jonathan Sanders

 

What’s your Problem? What’s your Solution? And what happens if you fail?

When I joined Kick London in November 2014 I had to write a fundraising strategy. In doing this you are meant to ask yourself the above 3 questions. So I thought our problem is that children and young people have stopped coming to church in their droves. Today 85% of children in the UK don’t step foot inside a church. In the Church of England of those who do attend – you are more likely to have survived the Titanic than survive being at church from childhood to adulthood.

 

Having prayed about what God wanted us to do we felt He gave us John 9:4 – Jesus said “As long as it is day, we must do the works of him who sent me. Night is coming, when no one can work.” There is a window of time to reach these young people this is our problem.

 

So what’s our solution to this? Well, we need to go out to them, build relationship and invite them to church. 99.7% of young people are in school – that is where they are. Of the 10 million school-aged children in the UK only 460,000 attend church on a Sunday but 3.3 million play sport on a Sunday. Therefore we need to talk their agenda – sport and why can’t we offer young people both sport and church at the weekend.

 

So we go into schools offering PE National Curriculum, Street Dance and Mentoring provision to engage these kids. All our sessions have a Christian values application such as perseverance, integrity and joy. We are then able to enable local churches to offer extended sport or dance provision at the weekend at a time which complements church. The young people receive coaching, linked to a theme, with an inspirational thought from the Bible at the break before they play matches or if a dance Academy they do routines.

 

It has been our testimony that “God’s work, when done in God’s way, never lacks God’s resources” (Chesterton). In the past 2 years we have seen engagement with our young people grow from 2,500 to 6,300 every week in schools. Our coaches are delivering professional services in 43 schools across London with 25 church based Kick Academies engaging their local young people. We have seen 10% of these young people engage in church through the Kick Academies.

 

The provision is now across 21 Boroughs in London – as far North as Muswell Hill, far South as Epsom, as far West as Sunbury and as far East as Dartford. We want to be ready to continue to grow to meet this problem but we also want to be led by the Lord. It has been a conviction for us as an organisation to sow to alive and not dead works because 1 Cors 3:6  “I, Paul plant, Apollo’s waters, but only God grows.” We want God to do the growth so that a generation of young people are not lost.

 

Joe Lowther, CEO of Kick London

Meet the Coach: Josh Chaproniere

1. Who are you, where are you from, how long have you been involved with Kick London, and what is your role?

Josh Chaproniere, Ludlow Shropshire, 2 years, on and off, as a sessional coach.


2. What are your favourite sports, teams, affiliations, and such like?

Manchester United and I have a soft spot for LA Galaxy.


3. How do you come to be a part of the Kick London family?

Alastair Park told me about the interviews. He was volunteering at St Johns helping Jack Taylor, as we all know he needs as much help as he can get.


4. What has been your best highlight while working for Kick London?

Probably answering question about God for kids at Kent House, a lot of them believed God was all about rules and control, being able to tell them about the love of God was amazing.


5. What is the funniest thing a child has ever said to you while working for Kick London?

“Are Alastair and Andy twins?”

6. Does Jesus care about football? If so, who does he support?

He does! But I think he’d be a little like Hans and have numerous affiliations, but he’d show a little more love to Liverpool, as let’s face it someone has to.

7. What is your personal sporting highlight, either for you or the team/person you support?

Manchester United winning the treble. It was that moment that I fell in love with the game.

8. What could happen in your working day, that would make your year?

Making a real difference to somebody’s life.


9. Finally, can you provide a picture of you involved in your sport, either an action shot, you in your teams kit, at a game supporting your team, you holding a cup or trophy, etc.

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10. How does Kick London fit in with your personal missional heart? Why Kick London?

I was saved though playing football for Christ central church so I know first had the power of sport, so I just try to show my love for sport and Jesus everyday.

Giant Killings!

What a weekend of FA Cup football action we had just recently!

 

We hear the old cliche’s rolled out about “The oldest football competition in the world” and “The Magic of the Cup”, but the most feared cliche by fans and players of the club’s biggest clubs, is the dreaded “Giant Killing!”

 

Giant Killing’s, for those of you who aren’t as football savvy as you are in other sports, is where a club of smaller stature beats a club of much larger stature. In a competition like the FA Cup, the opportunity of a giant killing is much more prevalent, as amateur clubs sometimes get drawn in ties against Premier League opposition.

 

In the latest round of action, we saw no less than FIVE giant killings! Wolverhampton Wanderers, in the lower reaches of the second tier, beat national giants, Liverpool. Oxford United, from the fourth tier of English football beat Newcastle United, while Millwall, of the third tier beat Premier League opposition in Watford. And these weren’t even the biggest shocks of the weekend!

 

Both Lincoln City and Sutton United, semi-professional clubs from non-league football (that is, non-profession teams, not affiliated to the English Football League) beat Brighton and Hove Albion and Leeds United respectively, both teams having hugely successful seasons in the Championship, and hoping to be promoted to the Premier League by the end of the season.

 

It cannot be understated what a massive achievement this is for these two minnows. The players of these clubs are likely to be part time players, working secondary jobs alongside playing football. To beat teams of players at the very top level of English football is not an easy feat!

 

Giant Killing’s garnered their name from the famous Bible story, David and Goliath, a story even known by those who have never even picked up a Bible! In short, when the King’s Army refused to take on Goliath (a nine foot tall giant) in battle, the only person brave enough to step up and fight was a young shepherd boy, David. Armed only with a slingshot and stone, and too small to even fit into proper armour, the boy defeated the giant against all the odds! The only thing David professed to have on his side, aside from years of experience protecting his sheep, was God’s presence.

 

In life, we often face circumstances where we feel the odds are stacked against us. It may be health, finance, a dispute at work, a grievance with a neighbour, or any other testing circumstance! And often in those times, we see no way out, no solution.

 

The story of David and Goliath, and the example set by those players of those small football clubs, show us that in trial, we should continue to persevere. In recent times, I have heard the quote “Don’t tell God how big your problem is, tell you problem how big your God is!” I believe this is what David did as he slayed his giant!

 

In life, we will face giant’s. But no giant is insurmountable. Trust God, and be a giant killer!

Meet the Quality Manager: Hans Sims

1. Who are you, where are you from, how long have you been involved with Kick London, and what is your role?

Hans Peter Sims, London.
Re joined in 2015 as Quality Manager.
Prior to that I worked for Kick London between 2006-2009.

2. What are your favourite sports, teams, affiliations, and such like?
Love all sports other than horse racing! Main sports being football and rugby
I support Derby County and have a soft spot for Liverpool!

3. How do you come to be a part of the Kick London family?
I first heard about Kick London through a friend who’s dad was excited by the vision and knew with my love of sports and my faith that I’d be interested. I interviewed for the position of development officer to see Kick London expand in Croydon and Bromley predominantly at the time.

4. What has been your best highlight while working for Kick London?
My first time round we had a very tight family unit as coach’s, it was special. Equally that is something that has remained re-joining Kick London.
I’d also have to say it was a highlight the other day for a pupil in a school assembly to highlight the Kick London value instead of the school value for the month when asked by a headteacher!

5. What is the funniest thing a child has ever said to you while working for Kick London?
“Andy Dutton is better than you sir”

(Editor’s note: This child subsequently went on to have a highly successful career as an FA affiliated talent scout)

6. Does Jesus care about football? If so, who does he support?
He cares about us, so in that sense he probably sees the value when used for good that football can bring.
He’s got a Derby County season ticket I do believe.

7. What is your personal sporting highlight, either for you or the team/person you support?
Oh wow, probably have to dig out some old ones when I was half decent! Representing my county (Surrey) when younger playing a football tournament in Norfolk was pretty epic. Got to play alongside some future Premiership players.

8. What could happen in your working day, that would make your year?
A pupil remembering not only the skill taught but telling me how they’ve put the Kick London value into practice.

9. Finally, can you provide a picture of you involved in your sport, either an action shot, you in your teams kit, at a game supporting your team, you holding a cup or trophy, etc.

Do you accept black and white photos?! Here is a picture of my church team winning the league trophy!

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10. How does Kick London fit in with your personal missional heart? Why Kick London?

It seeks to further advance God’s Kingdom through sport. That’s something that anyone who loves sport and Jesus could surely get excited by!

Meet the Coach: Alastair Park

1. Who are you, where are you from, how long have you been involved with Kick London, and what is your role?

My name is Alastair, I’m from the lovely area of Penge. I’ve been involved with Kick London for about 3 years now, currently working full time based in Shepherds Bush.

2. What are your favourite sports, teams, affiliations, and such like?

Surprise that my favourite sport is football, but love watching any sport whenever it’s on. Living in south east london there is only really one team to support, Crystal Palace.

3. How do you come to be a part of the Kick London family?

Just started volunteering in a school which my mum worked at, fell in love with the job from then on.

4. What has been your best highlight while working for Kick London?

Probably being able to set up a Kick Academy partnering my church and Kick London which gathers on average 40-60 young people each week and being able to share the gospel with them.

5. What is the funniest thing a child has ever said to you?

Not directly said to me but two kids were having an argument about one having a higher IQ than the other. After a long debate one child said “I do not have a low QI!”

6. Does Jesus care about football? If so, who does he support?

I’m sure he does. Well in the Bible it talks about Jesus seeking out the lost and at the moment West Ham don’t seem to have a clue so I’d say them.

7. What is your personal sporting highlight, either for you or the team/person you support?

I’m torn between 2. Seeing Crystal Palace beat Watford at Wembley to get back in to the prem was an incredible day! Or my church team, Christ Central winning the double, the league and the shield. Was a great year.

8. What could happen in your working day, that would make your year?

Jack Taylor returning comes close but probably just seeing one of the children I mentor make a commitment. For someone who’s had such a horrible start to life seeing him come to Christ would be incredible.

9. Finally, can you provide a picture of you involved in your sport, either an action shot, you in your teams kit, at a game supporting your team, you holding a cup or trophy, etc.

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Here’s a little appearance I had in a Nike advert, I managed to meet some amazing footballers and just an all round amazing experience!

10. How does Kick London fit in with your personal missional heart? Why Kick London?

I love sports, I love God and have a strong passion for the future generation. To combine all 3 is just incredible. Being able to make a difference in someone’s life which they could have with them forever is really special especially young people, they are the future, it’s them we need to look out for. I’m just so blessed I’ve landed myself a job that does this.

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