Today, 30 young leaders from six cities across the world will be arriving at the City Football Academy in Manchester, England, to take part in the first Cityzens Giving Young Leaders Summit.
Last year, Cityzens Giving gave Cityzens (Club members) the power to decide how City funded community football projects in six countries led by young people.
Now these young leaders are coming together for the first time to develop their skills, learn from each other and make friends.
The delegates are all under 25 years old and come from City’s family of Cityzens Giving projects in Manchester, Kuala Lumpur, Melbourne, New York, Barranquilla and Cape Town. The young leaders are using the funds to tackle a range of issues affecting young people through the power of football including gang crime, HIV, obesity and inactivity.
During the week they will be taking part in a variety of workshops to develop leadership, management and coaching skills including workshops delivered by sporting legends Will Greenwood and Marion Bartoli, social media training by the Club’s digital team and community coaching lessons with Manchester City FC’s City in the Community team. The week will culminate in a youth-led football festival for 200 local school children on June 19.
Wilson Poni, 18, currently delivers the Cityzens Giving project ‘I Speak Football’ in Melbourne and runs weekly inclusive football sessions for 250 socially isolated young people, aimed at building friendships and a sense of community through the global language of football.
Wilson is excited about developing his skills:
“We will be learning about cultures and different ways of teaching and playing football. I’m looking forward to meeting other young leaders from across the world as we’ll be able to learn from each other and develop a better insight into how football can make a positive impact on the lives of others.”
Tom Pitchon, City Football Group’s Foundation Director, said:
“This summit epitomizes the power of football to change lives. We’ve brought together young leaders from different backgrounds, speaking a number of different languages and yet they all share the same goal – to make a difference through football. We’re equipping them with the tools they need to go out and deliver life-changing projects in their communities. I feel immensely privileged to connect with such an amazing group of young people and proud of what they’re achieving here in Manchester and around the world.”
To keep up to date on their progress, visit mcfc.com or follow their journey on Twitter with #CityzensGiving.