If you live in the area of Killingworth in Tyne and Wear and have a family, then you may be interested in getting involved with a local youth club or sporting organisation as a volunteer yourself or to get your children involved as participants. There are several options available to you that include several sporting teams that compete in locally run youth leagues for sports such as football, rugby and cricket. These include the very successful KYPC – Killingworth Young People’s Club – who founded the North East Youth Development League in 2008 for under 11’s junior soccer. Prior to this, the club had been running junior festivals and mini-soccer leagues for over a decade catering for a variety of different age groups under 7’s up to under 17’s. Now the current league structure is run by two management committees who are responsible for the running of the mini-soccer teams and those playing in the separate under 11 league but they also undertake other responsibilities including an 11-a-side football team.
The purpose of these North East Youth Development leagues is to make junior football a fun and friendly sport to play by providing a safe and structured environment for boys and girls of all ages. The teams all have bold names that evoke positive connotations of invincibility, strength, courage, fearlessness and tenacity such as Apaches, Galaxy, Panthers, Pumas, Rangers, Rockets, Spartans, Scorpions, Sharks and Wolves to encourage the development of such personal characteristic in each child, as these attributes will be called upon throughout their lives both on and off the pitch. All mini-league matches are held at KYPC every Saturday and new players and supporters are welcome to come along to watch the game and find out more about the local teams but the club is also regularly looking out for experienced grassroots football coaches for those who would prefer a more hands on approach.
If your children prefer less energetic activities but would still like to get involved in a club or organisation within the community that will allow them to pursue other hobbies and interests there are other options outside Killingworth but within easy driving distance of the town. These include the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Scheme who has a local organisation that is situated in South Shields and the Durham County Scouts Association. The former is aimed at slightly older children, predominantly teenagers and young adults, who are interested in developing work and life skills to help them fulfil their potential and to create a brighter future for themselves and others. The latter has a very informative website where you can find out everything you need to know about Scouting in the area as well as listings of local clubs, forthcoming events and special celebrations. Each year, this organisation helps around 5,000 young people – boys and girls – enjoy new experiences while learning new skills and interacting with others. There are 14 districts with over 100 individual groups that are made up of beavers, Cubs, Scouts and Explorer Scouts, with each district run by volunteers supported by regional, as well as national, teams and committees.