“Hi, my name is Danyal and I am currently volunteering at the Rio Ferdinand Foundation.



I was put in touch with them via The Growth Company and have decided to take this opportunity – I wanted to work alongside RFF because of the amazing work they have done in the community and how much of a positive effect it can have on people like me.

“I want to give other young people the opportunities I never had.

Growing up in Old Trafford, there was a lack of facilities and opportunities. I have always been interested in and attracted to sport as a child but I’ve never had the opportunity to play or watch a match live. I’ve always wanted to play for a team but didn’t know how to go about it and I never had anyone to speak to. My aim whilst volunteering for RFF is to give support to young people through football coaching and run free community sport sessions for local young people to attend.

RFF organized a free FA Level 1 Football Coaching qualification for me to take part in, alongside 18 other local young people from Salford and Manchester, and we are learning about the principles of football training, as well as the rules and regulations.


This course gets you prepared for becoming a coach in any division leagues. One of my favourite parts of the course is how coaching can improve your mind, confidence and decision making. This will help me in a wide range of working scenarios throughout my life. My goal is to gain an FA Level 2 so that I can coach in a local team in Old Trafford.

The main focus of the course is developing our coaching skills and taking it further into higher level work and training so that in the near future we can head out and coach children up to senior adults. Coaching is a very demanding role – you have to view your surroundings to see if its suitable to play, organize the group you are working with, set up all the equipment needed for the session and, most importantly, you have to go at the pace of the learners.

We also work on on-and-off the pitch regulations. For example, if a referee was to make a poor decision then the opposition teams may want to challenge this. That may result in disruption of the game and poor or aggressive behavior from the crowd so I’ve learnt that it is important for not only the players to be respectful but also the people who are off the pitch.

“Coaching is not only about sport it is also about being a role model – you have a big responsibility to look after and support the players.

Coaching is also about the relationship of a student and the coach: building that professional relationship helps you create confidence in the players and allows the student to be him or herself around you.

The RFF team have also let me shadow them in the office doing admin tasks like updating their online database with registration forms and parental consent information, photocopying, as well as having face to face conversations with partners and planning schedules with Nikki. I have learnt to use a computer a lot better. It has boosted my confidence, I feel more comfortable meeting and talking to new people, and I have gained more skills and experience for my CV.