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14 August 2013

14 August 2013

Today, over 500 young people took part in the Camden Unity Cup, a fantastic sports and activity day for youth clubs and young people in Camden which was held at Coram’s Fields.

The Cup is an annual event, shaped by a steering group of 18 young people drawn from youth clubs and organisations across the borough. It gives boys, girls and young adults the chance to come together, enjoy sport, have fun and make links with each other as part of a huge fun day in a great central London location. The facilities at Coram’s Fields are fantastic, and the club has recently benefited from an investment by Sport England which have transformed two outdoor sports pitches using the latest sports technology.

The 2013 Camden Unity Cup Festival has been organised jointly by Fitzrovia Youth in Action, Coram’s Field, South Camden Youth Access Point, Kings Cross Brunswick Neighbourhood Association, Camden and Regents Park Youth League and London Youth. Apart from involving players in four age groups (U10’s/U12’s/U14’s/U16’s), young people were hosting a full programme of entertainment on stage.

The Unity Cup has been running every year since 1999 and is Camden’s largest and most well known 5-a-side football tournament.

The Unity Cup aims to give young people ownership of their football pitches and the responsibility to create safe environments for others to come into. It also celebrates the importance of local outdoor play areas. The tournament encourages local young people to set up teams just for the event and young people from all backgrounds and abilities take part each year.

A Youth Steering Group has been supported to plan the Unity Cup. They participate in training in event management and are supported in delivering all aspects of the programme. This includes stewarding, organising food/ refreshments, decorations, hosting and planning the fixtures and entertainment. This model has proved extremely successful since we began in 1999 and ensures young people are central to its development, not just participants.

London Youth’s sports development officers, John Jones and Jas Hothi were instrumental in helping put the day together, supporting the hard work of all the youth workers and sports teams at the clubs involved. Young people were also able to get involved in dance, cricket nets and other activities as well as a multi-age football tournament.

John Jones said of the event:

"The Camden Unity Cup is such a great idea, and it is fantastic that so many young people have got involved. The clubs have worked really hard to put on such a big day, and of course the young people on the steering group who planned the whole thing deserve the most credit for the way it has come together. The way the young people taking part have enjoyed themselves shows the benefits of sports development, and the importance of young people taking leadership roles. It has been a really good day."