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So let me list some ways:
- Coach sports
- A member of the board for your kids school, club, or Trust that helps others in some way
- Mentor Program
- Fund Raising on behalf of community organizations
- Free consulting for not-for-profits
- Speak at schools or for Charity events
- Your organization or company could take turns once a month to staff a shelter, soup kitchen or other social service
(Here is a link to 10 Ways to Change your Community)
Why Coach Sports?
Warren Buffet might not know sports as well as business, but when he said, "Tell me your heroes and I'll tell you how your life will end up", he was onto something.
When it comes to coaching, everyone wants a say but few are willing to turn their words into action and take a team... even under 8's which is where yours truly started. How can You enjoy coaching sport?
Let me count the ways:
1. Coach your kids and you get to spend more time with them at something you can help them have fun at AND enjoy mastering new skills.
2. Coaching young people of any age gives you the opportunity to have a massive and important influence on the future of your community and country! This is not just talk. Ask any adult who has played sport for a while and there is a good chance the had great people who were their coaches.
3. You will be remembered for all the right reasons and kids will copy your example. There are no less than 3 great coaches I remember until I left town at 17. Mr Nicolas (Fatherly man who really cared and It was much appreciate) Mr Edgar (fantastic accent I still haven't mastered but he was fair and encouraging), and lastly Bobby "Feed the Bear" Mutter (A burly Scotsman whose belief in me propelled my confidence sky high, I can still hear him call, "Who's the boss Richard? Show him who's the boss!"
4. You get to develop skills in something you have a passion for and coaching sports skills (or something else) is full of challenge and rewards.
5. Get a life! No longer wandering the streets looking for something or sitting in front of the TV, rock up to your local Baseball, Cricket, Football, Soccer club or school and I'm sure there will be opportunities to add a new dimension to your life and the lives of others.
6. Build contacts in your community and neighborhood. If you coach kids they have parents and they have lives too that may provide a way to help you with something in your life.
7. Leadership, responsibility, and commitment all have their own rewards and these are abundant when you coach sport.
8. If you are a player in a club you get praise from members in the club, you get on the "in" with the other coaches in case you wanted to advance a career in this way, and you get some equipment to use whenever you want to improve your own game.
9. It will add to your attractiveness to employers as coaching soccer or any sport, shows the attributes above. These are easily re-worded to suit the job type. E.g. Active Member of my Community. It shows commitment, reliability, purpose, and that you can get out of bed in the morning.
10. Personal satisfaction. Winning your competition, one game, or having kept a bunch of people happy and off the streets. Plus you are involved doing what you love, sport.
I once coached soccer at a local high school and these young boys (11 and 12 yrs) came to class with short black pen marked on the top of their wrists and hands... "What is that for?", I asked, "We're you" they said! Never under estimate your power. There are many coaching videos, courses (often run by your local Club), books and other coaches to help you. A good way to start is to support the coach, be a manager, or gear minder person and learn that way. Showing up to practices to help is also useful.
Last story, if you think managing or coaching at any level other than the pro's you are sorely mistaken. I have coached and assisted for National League Soccer, first XI teams of High School girls and boys, juniors and everything in between, but MY GREATEST experience and enjoyment came last year coaching the second team of girls for St Hilda's Collegiate School, we finished first unbeaten, entered a first team tournament and won 3 of 6. my manager made a huge difference to this as well.
Coaching is a full on commitment that reflects everything the Barcelona's and New York Yankees coaches experience (except the money and chance off being replaced if you lose!) So enjoy the rush of excitement and adrenaline that coaching gives on match day.
(PS. Look up sports club directory online in the search box or thumb through your phone book to find a club near you.) Get out there coaching sport and make a difference and remember, if you are there for the game or kids... you have already won.
By Richard Kerr-Bell Copyright 2004 updated 2011
Social Entrepreneurship is another part of this and this introduction should wet the appetite.
The Ashoka Website and organization is a leader in the field and this is from their site:
What is a Social Entrepreneur?Social entrepreneurs are individuals with innovative solutions to society’s most pressing social problems. They are ambitious and persistent, tackling major social issues and offering new ideas for wide-scale change.
Rather than leaving societal needs to the government or business sectors, social entrepreneurs find what is not working and solve the problem by changing the system, spreading the solution, and persuading entire societies to take new leaps.
Social entrepreneurs often seem to be possessed by their ideas, committing their lives to changing the direction of their field. They are both visionaries and ultimate realists, concerned with the practical implementation of their vision above all else.
Each social entrepreneur presents ideas that are user-friendly, understandable, ethical, and engage widespread support in order to maximize the number of local people that will stand up, seize their idea, and implement with it. In other words, every leading social entrepreneur is a mass recruiter of local changemakers—a role model proving that citizens who channel their passion into action can do almost anything.
Over the past two decades, the citizen sector has discovered what the business sector learned long ago: There is nothing as powerful as a new idea in the hands of a first-class entrepreneur.
Why "Social" Entrepreneur?Just as entrepreneurs change the face of business, social entrepreneurs act as the change agents for society, seizing opportunities others miss and improving systems, inventing new approaches, and creating solutions to change society for the better. While a business entrepreneur might create entirely new industries, a social entrepreneur comes up with new solutions to social problems and then implements them on a large scale.
Historical Examples of Leading Social Entrepreneurs:
- Susan B. Anthony (U.S.): Fought for Women's Rights in the United States, including the right to control property and helped spearhead adoption of the 19th amendment.
- Vinoba Bhave (India): Founder and leader of the Land Gift Movement, he caused the redistribution of more than 7,000,000 acres of land to aid India's untouchables and landless.
- Dr. Maria Montessori (Italy): Developed the Montessori approach to early childhood education.
- Florence Nightingale (U.K.): Founder of modern nursing, she established the first school for nurses and fought to improve hospital conditions.
- Margaret Sanger (U.S.): Founder of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, she led the movement for family planning efforts around the world.
- John Muir (U.S.): Naturalist and conservationist, he established the National Park System and helped found The Sierra Club.
- Jean Monnet (France): Responsible for the reconstruction of the French economy following World War II, including the establishment of the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC). The ECSC and the European Common Market were direct precursors of the European Union.
So how can you get involved?