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V: Olympian urges young people to become sports volunteers

Olympic Gold Medallist Darren Campbell has joined young people from Emerson Park School to launch the Sky Living For Sport Youth Volunteering Project. The scheme aims to inspire more 16 - 25 year olds to become leaders in sport in the build up to the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. It's the result of a unique Match Fund partnership between Sky, the Youth Sport Trust, and v.

The Sky Living For Sport Youth Volunteering Project is targeting young people who may not normally become volunteers, either through perceived lack of opportunity, lack of confidence or challenging circumstances. They will be offered encouragement and practical support to take their passion for sport out into their local community. In return, they can gain self-esteem, leadership and teamwork skills, as well as valuable hands-on experience, which can help them move into higher education or employment.

Youth Sports Trust chair Sue Campbell said: "Up to 70,000 volunteers will be needed to help put on the London 2012 and Paralympic Games, so there has never been a better time to get young people involved in sports volunteering.

"We are sure these young volunteers will be able to build fantastic relationships with young people in their local area, using the power of sport to become role models to the next generation of youngsters involved in school and community sport."

Motivation from athelete mentors

The Sky Living For Sport Youth Volunteering Project will work with schools and further education colleges to identify young people aged between 16 and 18, who will be invited to attend one of a series of 'inspiration days' around the country. Here, they will work with athlete mentors, including Darren, to equip them with the practical resources, tips and motivation to take their interest in volunteering forward.

On returning to school or college, their teacher will take on the role of mentor, helping them find a suitable volunteering placement. This will involve anything from organising sports festivals for younger pupils, to helping out with less traditional sporting activities, such as organising sessions at skate parks or with local youth groups.

Darren Campbell said: "Getting involved in sports volunteering through an initiative such as this can be a very powerful way for teenagers to raise their self-esteem and develop their potential through helping others, which is something I'm passionate about helping young people to do."

Darren Campbell features in a promotional film encouraging young people to get involved in volunteering, which will be shown across Sky's network.

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