Schoolchildren from across the borough were brought together to connect youngsters from different backgrounds through the power of sport.

The event, part of Waltham Forest Council’s Feel Good Young Ambassadors programme, saw almost 150 pupils from 11 of the borough’s schools take part in a day of physical activities and workshops at the Waltham Forest Feel Good Centre on Monday, October 14.

The programme is an off-shoot the council’s Connecting Communities scheme, a programme to trial schemes to improve social integration by bringing residents of all ages and backgrounds together.

The day provided training for young people on how to lead physical activities in school, resolve conflict, and build “resilience” to outside pressures such as violent crime.

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The event was held at the Waltham Forest Feel Good Centre

Cllr Vicky te Velde, herself a squash coach of four years, says the power of sport in bringing young people together is rooted in its accessibility.

She added :“The main this is to understand how sports can help people to connect with people they do not normally connect with and empower them as individuals.

“The aim is to empower them to understand their role in the community at a time when young people are becoming increasingly disconnected in real life due to social media.

“Sport is a great way of reaching out to communities that can sometimes feel left behind. We want everyone in Waltham Forest to feel involved and engaged.

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Pupils took part in a number of workshops and sporting activities

The day began by splitting the kids up into cross-school groups to take on team-building tasks, sporting activities and workshops.

Children were split up from their usual friendship groups to encourage them to communicate with, and get to know, pupils from other schools.

Rachel Warren, head of year nine and a P.E teacher at Walthamstow School for Girls, said: “It’s about developing their confidence and communication skills, because in their normal lessons they get very used to working with their friends.

“In this day and age, so many of the kids are communicating though social media, so projects like this help them develop their communication skills and get them talking to each other.”