Monitoring and Evaluation

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The Coaches Across Continents Model

Coaches Across Continents Values

Coaches Across Continents’ approach to creating sustainable three to four year partnerships with local sports for social impact groups is based on a model that focuses each year on delivering a customized program that: introduces new games and football for social impact themes, educates coaches, volunteers and leaders on how to effectively deliver football for social impact trainings and guides organizations in developing a sustainable curriculum. Each year of the partnership CAC commits either one week or two weeks to delivering the program to the partner coaches. Coaches Across Continents doesn’t pursue partnerships, bur rather believes that if the partner program takes the initiative and owns the first steps, and then there will be more ownership over the entire partnership.

Coaches Across Continents funds all the travel, lodging and expenses that are involved in the partnerships and to understand the value of the work being down in 13 countries and with over 30 partners, CAC has created a model that takes into account the hours spent on the field, the number of local coaches and teachers involved, the value of the equipment donated to the group and other components needed to run the project location. The following table represents the value of Coaches Across Continents “On Field” work starting in 2008.

Year Number of Countries Number of Implementing Partners Total $ Value On Field Number of Local On Field Educators Completed Hat-Trick Initiatives
2008 1 1 $15,304 40 0
2009 3 3 $217,820 182 0
2010 8 16 $407,332 1129 1
2011 12 22 $487,880 1416 2
2012 15 36 $683,499 1754 9

Football for Social Impact Games & Corresponding Themes

Coaches Across Continents Chance to Choice Curriculum has been designed based on our organization’s hand on research and experience working with a diverse group of sport for social impact organizations in 18 different countries. The curriculum has been adapted to what it is today- five central themes that include football for conflict resolution, football for health & wellness including HIV behavior change, football skills for life, football for gender equity and football for fun.  These themes have been complemented by additional themes that are very specific to a partner programs’ needs such as: football for the environment, football against drug and alcohol abuse and football for financial literacy.

Coaches Across Continents envisions the football pitch as a learning environment and the coach as the educator. Games are designed to teach football and life skills and coaches are taught how to better deliver the games so that the youth are always involved, active and having fun. CAC has found that it is the most effective to name the games off of famous footballers as well as role models that showcase positive behaviors on and off the pitch.

When working with a partner program a principal step is to determine the main social issues that the partner and its coaches are confronting with football as their tool. CAC has heard the voices of coaches, volunteers and community leaders in many countries and is able to relate one group’s challenges to those faced in communities in the same or other countries. CAC can share solutions that one group has found with communities dealing with similar issues. Once CAC has a better understanding of the issues, a curriculum of games is decided from the database of games that are then taught to the coaches. CAC not only teaches the games but also uses an approach that gives time to discuss the life skills practiced in the games and then time to reflect on how these life skills can be connected to off the field life situations.

Below is an example of a list of the games taught to our partner program, Slum Soccer, in Nagpur, India in 2011.  These were the games taught to a younger group of football coaches who had just been presented with the idea of using football for social impact. The program is interested in using football to address health & wellness, life skills, conflict resolution and gender equity.

Slum Soccer India 2011 Games Taught Football for Social Impact Theme
Circle of Friends Football for Health/Wellness
Ronaldo Skills Football Skills for Life
Ronaldo Ronaldo Revolution Football Skills for Life
Head/Catch Football Skills for Life
Ronaldo Relay Football Skills for Life
Messi Skills Football Skills for Life
Messi/Ronaldo Skills Football Skills for Life
Numbers Game Football for Conflict Resolution
Invisible Street Soccer Football for Conflict Resolution
Marta Skills Gender Equity
Marta Relay Football for Conflict Resolution
Ronaldo Tag Football Skills for Life
Marta Agility Football Skills for Life
Scary Soccer Football for Conflict Resolution
Marta Tag Football Skills for Life
Messi Relay Football Skills for Life
Messi Tag Football Skills for Life
Stamford Bridge Football for Health/Wellness
Middlesbrough Street Soccer Football for Conflict Resolution
Old Trafford Tag Football for Health/Wellness
T Ho skills Football for Health/Wellness

Below is a pie chart representing the information from above. The pie chart allows coaches to visualize the larger themes that were taught to them and is an important resource when deciding how to design the 24- WEEK curriculum for the specific program.

 

Football for Conflict Resolution

Coaches Across Continents creates games that intentionally create problems and moments of frustration for the participants. In creating these games, participants are forced to collectively address the challenges and figure out a solution for the entire team. For example, one of CAC’s games that causes a lot of conflict is called the lines game, that at first seems very simple, however, as the game becomes more complex and faster, it undoubtedly leads to teams arguing, pointing fingers and all talking at once. The sports environment is an ideal place to cause this type of conflict because participants then have to find solutions in order to continue to compete. In delivering these types of games, coaches have to understand to take a step back and let the youth practice solving problems individually and collectively.

Football for Gender Equity

 It is crucial to use football to talk about gender equity. In so many places women were once or still are on the sideline unable to play football because of traditions and mindsets that restricted females from participating. CAC teaches games that highlight important female footballers, like Marta from Brazil, Sawa from Japan and Abby from USA, and designs games that teach football skills as well as life skills. As an example, Marta Agility provides a game where participants have to use their voices, be aware of their space, solve the problem and work collectively. The game also highlights the agility and skills of Marta and reminds participants of the female footballers, who often had to struggle to get the chance or place to play. Important topics within gender equity are using the voice, having choices and making informed decisions.

Football Skills for Life

This is CAC’s most general theme because it incorporates many life skills that can be taught through football. Many of the games fall under this category because depending on the group dynamic and more importantly how the coach delivers the game, it can be focusing on communication, teamwork, setting goals and then even individual spatial awareness and concentration.

 

Football for Health & Wellness including HIV Behavior Change

Health & Wellness is a very important topic and one that is easily discussed through sports. The coaches are trained how to find the “teachable” moments during the game to then discuss various health related issues such as: the importance of taking care of one’s body, proper nutrition, understanding the role of the lungs and heart, etc. Coaches can use the games as platforms to speak to the youth about what it takes to be a good footballer and how important it is to take care of one’s body.

Within this theme is also HIV Behavior Change. CAC works in many communities where HIV is a major threat. CAC’s approach to dealing with such a grave issue is to focus on giving the youth opportunities in games to make healthy decisions that protect them from being infected with the virus. For example, CAC has a game where the youth have to first protect themselves from the ball “virus” without making any choices. Then the youth have to make a choice that will help protect them from the virus, which can include using a condom, getting tested together and avoiding drugs and alcohol. The youth give the choices, which are incorporated into the game. The participants practice making the healthy choices in a game that is still fun and related to football. Another point that CAC works to address is the stigmatization of those infected with HIV. CAC has found that in many communities those infected with HIV are viewed as threats to society and are therefore marginalized. Our approach is to include all individuals and to use football to encourage social inclusion.

Curriculum Development

After a five to ten day training with a partner program at their local site, CAC coaches design a 24-week curriculum with the input of local coaches and the program leader. The curriculum reflects the most important themes and issues that the coaches are dealing with in their community so that there is relevance in delivering the games. The weeks schedule is designed to reflect a football practice where there is one skill introduced and the development of the skill is the main priority. The program participants are then responsible for implementing the curriculum with the guidance of their partner program leader.

Below is an image representing a portion of a 24-week curriculum developed for Whizz Kids United in KwaZulu Natal, South Africa.

fro impact model-001

Below is a breakdown of the 24-week curriculum developed for Whizz Kids United (South Africa). The breakdown takes into account the football for social development theme that each games addresses and reflects the bigger issues that the community and the coaches are working to address through football.

Coaches Across Continents has recently transferred all of our games onto an online system, which means that coaches can truly have 24/7 support through an online resource that hosts all the games in a 3D format. Coaches receive a manual of the games taught which is then their own to be used with their teams or to be passed on to other coaches. On the online system – Sport Session Planner (see below), coaches can visualize the games, ask questions about the related life skills, develop their own games and work with other coaches from various communities.

The Sport Session Planner system:

Below is an example of a page in the manual given to the Grootbos Foundation in Gansbaai, Southa Africa with the games taught during the second year of the Hat Trick Initiative.

How CAC Measures Impact

WISER Model

Coaches across Continents works in complex environments, which demand a significant degree of knowledge, analysis, judgment and flexibility in order to meet the needs of the partner program. Accordingly Coaches across Continents goes beyond simply training and ‘educates’ coaches to make appropriate choices in their use of the Coaches across Continent’s curriculum in their work in their communities. Using a cascade model of development in order to optimize program sustainability, these coaches then educate the youth with the games and when necessary train the new coaches on how to utilize the curriculum.

The WISER model is the main component of the Coaches Across Continents evaluation model because it allows for the evaluation of a program that is inclusive to various factors that with other models might be missed. The approach is focused on not only the outcomes but also the processes and steps to reach these outcomes. CAC coaches work with the local coaches to gather the necessary information to evaluate the program with the following criteria.

wiser chart-001

To read more about the WISER evaluation, click here.

Impact Model

How does an organization know and understand their impact in the communities? Coaches Across Continents is committed to gaining a greater understanding of our role as a partner to many organizations. Our role from one program to the next is distinct therefore our approach is to not try to fit a one size fits all model to each partnership because it is unfair to the partners who are working within their unique circumstances in their communities. Coaches Across Continents has an array of tools to help equip programs to more effectively run their football for social impact programs and these tools are then transferred to coaches, teachers and leaders who then make them their own. How the tools then create impact within the community is what our impact models try to capture. The model takes into account the inputs, outputs, and outcomes from each year of the partnership and then also gives room for unique circumstances, or unexpected results.

fro impact model-001

Baseline and Endline Results

Before beginning our programs it is imperative to grasp the coaches comprehension of football for social impact. Questions have been designed to measure the learning of local coaches during the programs. At the beginning and end of each program coaches are asked the same questions. We can then compile baseline and endline graphs to compare the percentage of positive answers for each question and measure the increase in knowledge among local coaches.

There are three questions for each football for social impact theme. See below for an example of our baseline and endline questions for the football for gender equity theme and the 2013 results for this theme from our partnership with Play Soccer Ghana.

Gender Equity Baseline and Endline Questions

1. Do you know how to use football to teach young people about the role and place of women and girls on the soccer field, at home and in the community?

2. Do you know how to use football to give girls confidence to “have a voice” and make personal choices through football?

3. Do you know how to teach girls about powerful female role models?

BaselineEndline Ghana

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