Wednesday 26 August 2015

Lagos (August 26, 2015) – The English Premier League and British Council’s hugely successful Premier Skills initiative will run a grassroots community football coaching and child protection training course from Wednesday 26 to Sunday 30 August 2015. In collaboration with the Justice for All (J4A) programme, Nigerian Premier Skills coach educators will train 15 facilitators from four Civil Society Organisations based in Lagos, providing them with community football coaching skills. The trained community coaches will then use their newly acquired skills to work with members of the public to increase awareness of the child rights act, learn how to identify potential child abuse and to ensure children are protected from all forms of violence by using football as an outreach mechanism.

The organisations who will be sending participants to the training include Women Rights and Health Project, Agege Community Safety Initiative, Innovative Strategy for Human Development and the Ovie Brume Foundation.  They are all grantees of the Justice for All programme and work to address issues of community safety and gender-based violence. 

Premier Skills uses football to develop a brighter future for young people around the world, drawing upon the global appeal of the Premier League and its expertise in delivering community programmes, alongside the British Council’s global network and track record of grassroots programme delivery.

Through Premier Skills coach training, which features both interactive classroom-based learning and on-the-field technical training, over 2,800 grassroots coaches in 25 countries have learned valuable coaching, leadership, communication and soccer skills.  As a result, trainees are better able to perform in their role as coaches and mentors to young people.

Ruth Okafor, a Coach Educator said “Through Premier Skills, I have been able to reach out to people in my community using football as a tool to address issues. The exercise has really touched the lives of participants and has transformed them from being disorderly to becoming an organised group of youths.”

Mohammed Ahmed, Director Society at British Council Nigeria adds “The English Premier League and British Council have successfully run the Premier Skills project in Nigeria for four years. In that time, we have trained 186 coaches and referees and last year we worked with the Lagos State Football Association and Ministry of Education to train over 600 secondary school girls on child protection through the Eko football Premier Skills project. This year, we will work with organisations supported by our DFID funded Justice for All programme, providing grantees with an opportunity to add new skills which will improve their capacity to engage more effectively with their communities, using sport as a platform to create more awareness of the rights of our children and how we can more effectively protect them”

The course in Lagos is jointly organised by the British Council and the Justice for All (J4A) programme.

WHAT: An intensive training course for community football coaches as part of the Premier League and British Council’s Premier Skills programme.

WHEN: Wednesday, August 26 to Sunday, August 30 2015

WHO: 15 facilitators from four Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) based in Lagos namely Women Rights and Health Project, Agege Community Safety Initiative, Innovative Strategy for Human Development and the Ovie Brume Foundation.

Notes to Editor

Premier Skills is a partnership between the Premier League and the British Council which uses football as a tool to develop a brighter future for young people around the world.

It draws upon the Premier League’s global appeal and expertise in delivering community programmes in the UK, alongside the British Council’s global network, track record of delivery and world class expertise in English. 

Since 2013, Premier Skills has run in 25 countries: Afghanistan, Botswana, Brazil, China, Egypt, Ethiopia, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Korea, Malaysia, Mexico, Myanmar, Nigeria, Qatar, Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Sudan, Tunisia, Uganda, USA, Vietnam and Zambia. Premier Skills has also previously operated in Cameroon, Malawi and Morocco.

Since Premier Skills began in 2007, 6,300 coaches and referees have been trained in 28 countries, who in turn have reached nearly one million young people. 

Through Premier Skills English, teachers and learners of English are given free, compelling learning materials, drawing on football-based content from the most exciting football league in the world.

For more on Premier Skills visit To find out more about the football-focused English content and to view the materials online, visit  

The Premier League is involved in a wide range of community projects both in the UK and overseas. For more information on these, see: 

About the British Council

The British Council is the UK’s international organisation for educational opportunities and cultural relations. We create international opportunities for the people of the UK and other countries and build trust between them worldwide.

We work in more than 100 countries and our 7000 staff – including 2000 teachers – work with thousands of professionals and policy makers and millions of young people every year teaching English, sharing the Arts and in education and society programmes.


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