The continually changing situation brought about by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has seen children and their parents regularly adapting to different learning and working environments.
From working at home and home-schooling, school closures, isolations, and infections; parents continue to don various hats in order to meet their child’s needs at home.
When sports clubs and schools have been closed some parents will also have been taking on the role of sports coach, keeping children physically active and ready to return to sport when the time comes.
As we know, keeping active can have a positive effect on people’s mental health. So we feel it’s important that sports organisations recognise parents’ important contribution and offer any support they can during this difficult time.
How sports organisations can help when children aren’t able to participate in sports in-person
Here are some ideas on how you can support sports parents:
- let parents know that there is no pressure on them to coach – encourage them to be child-led on how much they want to get involved
- share any online resources you have within your sport, such as training and warm-up plans or ideas for activities
- keep children motivated through social media by sharing inspirational stories from your sport's history, or by encouraging children to take part in sport-related challenges
- share information from the NSPCC on children’s mental health and wellbeing with parents, as well as the details of support services for children and families
- show parents you appreciate their hard work by sharing memories from past Parents in Sport Week events on social media, as well as other messages of thanks
- be a point of contact for parents if they have any questions about how they can keep their child active, or if in elite sport, keep them on target
With increased time spent behind closed doors, it’s important that all adults know who to contact if they have a safeguarding concern about any child. So please make sure, as a sports organisation, you’re sharing the details of the NSPCC helpline across your channels.