Bags are packed, school stuff is in backpacks, the passion and desire to get going abounds in that first trip... Except this time you can’t. Whoever could have predicted that everything would grind to a halt? But that’s the way it is. All of a sudden, planes are grounded; balls are in cages and everyone’s at home. “And now? What do we do?”. This is exactly what we coaches have been asking ourselves on our first day of Smart Working. “Well, we talk a lot about resilience in our coaching courses and now is the time to put it into practice,” we answered in unison.
So instead of being both coaches and educators, we are now both coaches and actors within these four walls, making videos of games to be played and distributed to all 30 Inter Campus countries. Bottles became cones and paper became footballs. That’s how such games of ours were born as “the witch commands the colours”, “the magic coloured square” and “the forest at home”. The children can then do these activities and send them back to us in groups from their home countries. But there’s another aspect; using technology where possible, we talk to coaches and children, organise video-calls, set up calls between different countries and we get to know, even if only online, kids of diverse nationalities.
Elias, a Mexican boy, and Valeria, from the USA, asked each other what their favourite food was... the answer, without hesitation, was the same: PIZZA! The analytical phase virtually became an ad hoc quiz, and the implementation phase turned into a spinning wheel; with just one click, the wheel spins and the first kid to find the indicated object wins (obviously only after having created the necessary safety protocols).
When the video-chats are over, we meet up again in front of the screen with all different kinds of hats: tropical fruit, sunglasses and common household objects, from the USA to Bolivia, from Mexico to Russia. Those last two countries were directed to make video calls so that the kids in orphanages can say hi to each other Those at home get in touch with those at school, and vice versa. Of course, there’s nothing like travelling and being out on the football pitch, and we cannot wait to go back to visit our countries, kids and coaches. But when you are resilient, even the greatest of difficulties can be overcome.