28th July 2020, 14:29 | therfl

RFL welcomes UK Coaching’s new Duty to Care Toolkit

RFL welcomes UK Coaching’s new Duty to Care Toolkit

The RFL welcome UK Coaching’s new coach learning package – their Duty to Care Toolkit – and encourage coaches and administrators at all levels of the game to make the most of the new resources.

The Toolkit has been developed to ensure the nation’s coaches are equipped with the knowledge and skills to provide great coaching experiences to others, and support them as coaches to better look after themselves as they return to coaching after COVID-19 restrictions are relaxed.

Rugby League coaches will be able to earn a free nationally recognised ‘digital badge’ to demonstrate to the public they are committed to the principles of Duty to Care (Diversity, Inclusion, Mental Health, Safeguarding and Well-being), which underpin great coaching.

Dave Rotheram, the RFL’s Chief On-Field Officer, said: “This is an excellent innovation from UK Coaching.  Recently the sport of Rugby League completed its ‘Whole Game Review’ and many of the recommendations and workstreams that have come out of that have a duty of care at their core.

“We would encourage coaches and administrators at all levels of the game to spend some time looking over the available resources and implementing new practices.”

The Duty to Care Toolkit is now available via UK Coaching’s learning and development platform - ukcoaching.org.

The findings of Baroness Grey-Thompson’s Duty of Care in Sport review coincided with UK Coaching’s plan to devise a product that ensures coaches are sufficiently equipped to deliver great coaching – and thereby, inspire their participants to develop lifelong active lifestyles and ensure athletes’ welfare is at the top of their priority list.

UK Coaching’s Director of Coaching Emma Atkins, said:

“We are ecstatic about the launch of our new Duty to Care Toolkit and Digital Badge, which supports coaches by enabling them to show their commitment to great coaching, and to continue to improve the coaching experience people receive.  

“In the coronavirus era, coaches have a big part to play in their communities, lifting the mood and boosting the physical, social, emotional and mental health of the nation. More than ever before, we need to look after our participants regardless of where they are on their sport and physical activity journey. The last few months have put an unimaginable strain on people’s physical and mental well-being, and thus, we are seeing a society desperate to return to sport and exercise. We know that many coaches are wanting to return to coaching too, but they want the reassurance that they can do this safely and confidently.  

“Many of the nation’s coaches, whether they’re grassroots or elite level, need support and learning opportunities so they can effectively look after the well-being of their participants, as well as their own too. 

“At UK Coaching, we pride ourselves in supporting coaches who transform the lives of individuals and communities to help create a happier and healthier society. This extensive toolkit will help all coaches thrive in their role, which is essential if we are to navigate this uncertain time together and get the nation back on its feet.” 

Sport England’s Executive Director of Sport Phil Smith, said:

“We are really pleased that this support for coaches is now available, especially with the recent news that recreational and team sport are set to reopen, as coaches are at the heart of helping to get England’s activity levels back to where they were before coronavirus.

“As we slowly return to playing the sports we love, or maybe start new ones, it is important that people enjoy their first experiences back, and the Duty to Care Toolkit will help coaches have the support they need across the areas of Diversity, Inclusion, Mental Health, Safeguarding and Well-being. Alongside the advice and guidance we’ve compiled on how the sport and physical activity sector can successfully and safely return to play, this will really help them to provide great experiences and support everyone safely back into activity.” 

Paralympian Tanni, Baroness Grey-Thompson, said: 

“UK Coaching’s toolkit is the right way for coaches – at any stage of their career – to check in, challenge themselves and refuel their coaching skills to keep delivering great coaching experiences.”