Youth Sport Trust has announced its support for 'Empathy Week' this month and is encouraging other Sport for Development organisations to get involved.
The week of action takes place from February 24 to 28, with a theme this year of ‘Sport for Change’, and is built around a programme that helps young people not only recognise and develop empathy but utilise this skill to directly take social action.
It has been developed primarily for a schools audience but individuals and community organisations can also register and participate.
The campaign was founded by Ed Kirwan, a former science teacher who has spent the past two years, travelling, filming and using visual storytelling to champion social causes.
The guiding principles are 'Everyone can add value to the community they live in' and 'Everybody is a leader to somebody. Most just don’t recognise they are'.
Ed says: “We need to build authentic connections – connections that bridge division and disseminate beyond the boundaries of a classroom wall.
“Moreover, we need to give our students the opportunity to practise that empathy. The permission to be creative and have freedom to express what they care about and why. The trust to lead on projects that they design and to take ownership of them."
The Youth Sport Trust is promoting the movement and signposting teachers to the free secondary school resources that will make the week come alive for young people.