The introduction of AFL to children aged 5 to 12 in New Zealand is a relatively new to Auckland’s North Harbour Region.
The formation of the Oteha Valley KiwiSport project saw the collaboration of 8 primary schools and 8 sports in that region
AFL New Zealand’s ‘AFL KiwiKick’ programme is one of the sports delivered and focuses on developing fundamental movement and ball skills for boys and girls between 5 to 12 years of age.
The programme includes the delivery of 6 sessions to every class of the eight schools involved and is followed by an after school programme that runs for a further 8 weeks.
This takes place at the local school to ensure the burden of travel is reduced for parents and volunteers and it is easy to assist trained and qualified AFL New Zealand employees in attendance at each centre.
The programme places great emphasis on parent involvement and community links. Organised lesson plans, volunteer retention initiatives, resource kits, umpiring and coaching accreditation are all features involved in the project.
The fundamental skills of ‘Kick, Catch, Pass and Bounce’ are utilized throughout the AFL KiwiKick Programme and are transferable to a wide range of sports.
Since the commencement of the Oteha Valley KiwiSport project over 3500 children have taken part in 6 sessions within school time and over 350 have participated in after school programmes and we now have over 35 accredited coaches within the region.