Youth Zone at Home: OnSide’s response to Covid-19
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OnSide Youth Zones annual President’s Cup took place on Saturday as over 300 young people gathered at Wigan Youth Zone to take part in a host of sports, arts and drama challenges with Blackburn Youth Zone walking away victorious – for the third year running.
The OnSide President’s Cup, kindly supported by Norman K. Stoller CBE KStJ DL, President of Mahdlo (Oldham Youth Zone), truly emphasised the power of the Youth Zone network as Wigan, Blackburn, Manchester, Bolton, Carlisle, Oldham Youth Zones battled out a fun-filled day for the ultimate prize – the winning Youth Zone!
For the first time ever, a team from London also took part as OnSide take strides forward to developing Youth Zones in the capital.
The winning Youth Zone was decided after a series of non-traditional games and activities between senior, junior and inclusion teams, including wheelchair basketball, bladderball, gym challenges, art attack, a dance off and many more!
On top of that, each Youth Zone put together pre-event videos and you can watch them by following this link – well done to hosts Wigan Youth Zone who bagged the five points for this challenge.
A chant won by debutants London and a unique mascot, won by Carlisle Youth Zone, creatively showcased; team members, Youth Zone strengths and encouraged a positive buzz about the event throughout the network.
One of the day’s main successes was the demonstration of sporting endeavour, teamwork and fair play.
All the young people were presented with a souvenir medal before Bolton lads and Girls Club were presented with the Fair Play trophy, presented by sponsor and OnSide Chairman, Bill Holroyd. Blackburn then lifted the winning President’s Cup 2015 trophy – presented by event sponsor Norman K. Stoller CBE KStJ DL.
Ryan Powell, Sports Development Coordinator at Wigan Youth Zone said: “It was great to see so many young people from different areas and different backgrounds, coming together to compete and have fun. Young people from junior, senior and inclusion groups were brought together to put in incredibly strong team performances. Although Blackburn Youth Zone were the official champions, all the young people are winners.
“A huge thank you to OnSide, our volunteers and staff from all the Youth Zones – the event would not have happened without your help and enthusiasm.”
Stephen Pearson, Project Co-ordinator at OnSide Youth Zones commented: “The buzz and euphoria created by each Youth Zone was fantastic! Each young person were fully focussed, trained and prepared to compete for their Youth Zone. They put all of their efforts, thoughts, concentrations and even bodies on the line! Juniors, seniors and inclusion members all competed for the title and a lot of fun, friends and respect were made across the event which lead to some really great memories and lifelong friends. It was great to see London travel up for the event too and this truly shows the growing potential of the OnSide network. Wigan Youth Zone have embraced the spirit of the games by hosting the event this year and bought in an additional creative element to the games including Art Attack and Drama. This year’s President’s Cup has to go down in history as one of those great Youth Zone days!”
Norman K. Stoller CBE KStJ DL commented: “I am so very proud of all the young people who come together every year to do their best to win the Presidents Cup. What really pleases me is to see the way in which they compete and particularly the opportunity given to include those with a disability to take an active part too. I admire the sportsmanship in which the winners praise those who lose and even more important is the way that the losers congratulate the winners.”
He continued: “This annual competition which attracts larger numbers of competitors as each year passes has become the focal point to make new contacts, to take on new challenges and to bring out the very best in sportsmanship. Long may it continue.”
Thanks to everyone who made the day a huge success.