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Kick It Out: Want to work in football?

UPPING THE LEVELS: A past look at the Raise Your Game conference

IT SEEMS to have been a while since I have managed to put pen to paper but I am delighted to be able to this week and provide an update on a big event.

This month, Kick It Out’s seventh annual mentoring conference Raise Your Game (RYG) – this year supported by the Premier League - returns and for the third year in a row, will be held at the Emirates Stadium home to Arsenal Football Club.

Monday, April 24 is the date and I truly cannot wait for the largest gathering of football industry figures, alongside many whose dream is to one day work within the beautiful game.

For anyone that has not experienced RYG before, the concept is quite simple. There are seven areas of mentoring to choose from:

• Media and communications

• Coaching and management

• Community and grassroots

• Football business and administration

• Player services (intermediaries)

• Sport science and physiotherapy

• Refereeing.

The mentors within these areas roll off the tongue from Leon Mann (ITV and BCOMS), The Voice newspaper’s Rodney Hinds, Chris Ramsay (QPR), Lincoln Moses, MBE, (Continental Star), Henry Winter (The Times) plus mentors from the Premier League, The FA, Sky Sports, BBC...I could go on and on.

It is important to recognise that our mentors give-up their time for free to not only support the event and provide invaluable advice but to give back to the game, in a time when many criticise that the game doesn’t do enough.

Those in attendance will get to spend 15 minutes at a time with appointed mentors and will also have the opportunity to attend careers, media and coaching workshops.

A panel session, that will look at what the government and football is doing to help football’s workforce look more reflective of those that play the game, will kick off the event.

I’m delighted that Reshmin Chowdhury, who most will recognise from BT Sport’s coverage of the Champions League and Max Rushden from Sky Sports Fantasy Football Club and radio will host the day, which once again is a sell out.

Last thought - when I was working my way through the world of football, these types of events were never an option and you almost had to learn the hard way or get out basically.

Raise Your Game is doing what it says on the tin, helping people who would normally never get the opportunity to meet, let alone have the important conversations with industry figures that could shape the rest of their careers.

Troy Townsend is Kick It Out’s Education and Development Manager.

For more information visit: www.kickitout.org and follow these accounts on Twitter: @KickItOutRYG and @RaiseYourGameRYG

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