The Arsenal Gap Year Programme offers an opportunity to get involved in community football coaching with Arsenal in the Community, both in London and overseas at community partners.
Problem to be tackled
The Gap Year Programme receives many applications from candidates from all over the world who at the end can not afford a participation but who would be willing to gain qualifications and experience in coaching football whilst contributing to various projects and community programmes in the UK as well as around the world – in the short-term but also in the long-term.
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The Gap Year Programme is divided into three stages. The first stage of the Programme is based in London and lasts for five months. Following this there is the opportunity of one or two placements abroad, each lasting around three months.
There are two intakes of the Arsenal Gap Year Programme each year. The August intake is made up of three stages lasting up to 12 months in total. The November intake comprises Stages 1 and 2 only and lasts around eight months in total.
‘Gappers’ will undergo football and education courses alongside practical coaching and teaching experience to reinforce the delivery of learning materials.
Programme elements are for example FA Level 1 coaching qualification, FA Emergency Aid certificate, FA Safeguarding Children course or Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL) course.
The Gap Year Programme targets candidates before or after higher education, or even as a career break or a career start, they must be aged 18 or over and need to demonstrate a willingness to learn and a responsible attitude.
The project targets to make the Gap Year Programme more accessible to young persons especially for young females from deprived backgrounds and/or a lower income family background who can not afford a participation without financial assistance or stipends and scholarships.
For the Gap Years 2018/2019, 2019/2020 and 2020/2021 The SOL Foundation assists Arsenal in the Community in enabling participants to attend the Gap Year Programme through stipends and/or scholarships and to gain important qualifications and experiences for their future lives; to be shared with further beneficiaries at the global community programmes but also as the tool kit for an own career.
Arsenal in the Community (AITC), established in 1985, is the Community Department of The Arsenal Football Club PLC.
AITC has been and is using the power of the Arsenal name to positively impact the lives of young people; it gives young people a chance and works to motivate and inspire young people – often through education and sport – to help them reach their potential and be the best they can be. The team delivers sport, social and education programmes to thousands of individuals each week.
AITC offers a wide range of programmes in north London and beyond, its work is supported by the club and The Arsenal Foundation with funding also coming from a number of external organisations, including the Premier League.