Arsenal in the Community

Kerstin D’Silva, Arsenal Gap Year 2015


0From: Harlow, Essex

Pre-Gap Year: Studied Youth Studies at London Metropolitan University and volunteered at various schools and organisations providing support to children with behavioural difficulty.

Post-Gap Year: Youth support worker

Gap Year placement(s): Uganda, Australia 

What did you gain from doing the Arsenal Gap Year?

I've gained a lot of confidence, self-belief and more knowledge on how to engage with young people.  I've also met a new set of friends with whom I've had the privilege to share my experience.

What was your favourite part of the programme?

My favourite part of the programme was the FA Youth Module 1 course, as you are working with your fellow peers and it gives you so much knowledge on how to coach young people. So for me it was very relevant to the field I want to go into. I have to say the opportunity to go to Uganda was another favourite part of my experience, where I learnt a new culture in a country I wouldn't have ever of thought of going to. 

How would you describe your overall experience on the Arsenal Gap Year?

A massive challenge! It was rewarding to go to Africa. Once in a lifetime experience as well.

What advice would you give to anyone thinking of doing the Arsenal Gap Year?

I was the only girl in my group but it didn't put me off! The males in my group were supportive, always included me and never treated me any differently to the males in the group or made me feel like an outsider. There’s no one trying to get one over the other. So I’d definitely encourage more females to apply. The main advice I would give to females about entering what they think might be quite a male-dominated environment would be to never allow that to put you off applying because it will stop you from progressing onto other things. It’s not an excuse to not apply for such a massive opportunity, especially if you want to get into coaching.

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