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Foundation partner scoops national Kickz award

A member of staff from Tottenham Hotspur Foundation's Rush Croft Kickz project in Chingford has picked up the 'Outstanding Partner Support Award' at this year's national Kickz awards.

Christopher Hodge was handed the accolade at a ceremony held at Chelsea Football Club's Stamford Bridge last week.

Shortlisted nominees from the Tottenham Hotspur Foundation also included Keeley Blackwood for Inspiring Person, Karolina Rapacka in the Inspiring Young Person category and Edward Kargbo for both the Volunteer Award and the Outstanding Volunteer Award.

The awards recognise the success and achievements of the 112 Kickz projects run across the country by 42 Premier League and Football League clubs.

As a Community Sports Coach at Rush Croft Sports College, Christopher has been instrumental in the success of the Tottenham Hotspur Kickz project at the school. Christopher consistently goes above and beyond the call of duty to ensure the smooth-running of sessions and the best possible outcomes for young people attending.

Christopher chooses to volunteer his time and attends every session without fail, contributing to the running of the sessions and ensuring all access, facility and equipment requirements are met.

In addition, Christopher is a key member of the project's steering group, offering advice and guidance on local issues and signposting young people to opportunities through his role as the London Borough of Waltham Forest's ‘Get into Football’ Officer.

With a genuine interest and commitment to the development of the young people who attend Kickz, Christopher consistently strives for the best possible outcomes for participants by providing new and unique sessions and workshops such as homework support and media training.

On receiving his accolade, Christopher said: “I consider it a great honour to have won this award. It is however important to recognise all the nominees for their contribution to Kickz projects and the fact that they are all making a real difference in their local communities.

“It’s equally important to mention our partners and the support we have given each other on a day-to-day basis making sure the Rush Croft project is a success.

“I hope winning this award means as much to all those that have made it possible as it does to me and that we all recognise the positive impact we are having on young people’s lives by providing them with many different innovative sessions and workshops.”

Alex White, Community Development Manager at Tottenham Hotspur Foundation, said:

"This award is fantastic recognition for the outstanding support Christopher and Rush Croft Sports College has provided to the Tottenham Hotspur Kickz project in Waltham Forest. It highlights the importance of partnership working to deliver the best possible outcomes for local young people."

Kickz is a national Premier League initiative which uses the unique appeal of Football Clubs to engage young people aged 12 to 18 years old in sport and positive activities outside of normal school hours, in some of the country's most disadvantaged communities.

The free sessions aim to break down barriers between the Police and young people, whilst providing social support and education to help reduce crime, anti-social behaviour, gang activity, alcohol and drug abuse.

Using the power of sport and the appeal of Tottenham Hotspur Football Club, our Kickz programmes give local young people the opportunity to play organised football and other sports along with taking part in dance, music and fashion workshops across the London Boroughs of Waltham Forest, Haringey and Enfield.

The Tottenham Hotspur Foundation runs three Kickz projects at Rush Croft Sports College, Ferry Lane Cruyff Court and Northumberland Park School.

Since the project was launched in 2006, Tottenham Hotspur Foundation coaches and volunteers have worked with more than 2,500 young people locally.