Cricket Without Boundaries (CWB) is a UK based charity dedicated to helping, educating and developing local communities around the World through the spread and growth of cricket. It is also about personal empowerment, both for adults and for children. The Charity uses the sport to help develop personal skills ranging from basic teamwork to self-discipline and leadership.
CWB has three main goals:
To spread cricket through coaching children and teaching adults how to coach
To link the sport to HIV/AIDS awareness and incorporate these messages into coaching sessions.
To bring together and empower local communities through cricket.
Working in partnership with the Cricket Associations in each country, the relevant British High Commissions and the ICC, we follow a simple, 3 stage, sports development structure to try to ensure some form of sustained development of the game: 1) coach education; 2) Schools coaching, and 3) Tournament.
In Sub-Saharan Africa alone there are 22 million people living with HIV, with 2 million Adult and Child Deaths from AIDS in 2007.
A large number of those infected are children: many of whom are in cricket playing nations in Africa. It is not just medicine that is needed, but education and a focus on changing behavioural patterns.
The link between Sport (particularly cricket) and HIV/AIDS is not an obvious one to everyone. However, we found that sports coaches are in a unique position to impart a message of staying healthy and doing so within a fun and trusting environment. They often have the respect of those that they coach, and are not perceived in the same negative way that sometimes children perceive their teachers or a health worker. They are ideally placed to talk about the importance of staying healthy to fulfil someone's true potential, both on the field and in life generally.
The CWB Approach: CWB is about cultivating developing coach education and participation in playing the game, but this goes hand-in-hand with raising awareness of HIV to save lives and empower those who participate in the charity's activities.
The CWB approach can be summarised as follows:
■To build the technical expertise of local cricket authorities and groups.
■To provide equipment that allow more children to play the game.
■To mainstream safe-sex and protective behaviours to halt the spread of HIV through cricket coaching and training sessions.
■To ensure equality of treatment for all who are coached, irrespective of age, gender or their HIV status.
■To help combat gender inequalities by having boys and girls training, learning and playing together.
■To empower children by learning a disciplined sport.
Since 2005 CWB has already improved the coaching skills of over 3,500 youth and adult cricket coaches. The charity has also coached over 200,000 children, who will be the next generation of cricketers, passing on skills and knowledge in cricket grounds, schools and communities, both about cricket and about the disease.
CWB are looking to recruit volunteers for our overseas projects but also we need volunteers to work on building the charity in this country.