Mon 19 November 2018
My car boot currently holds seven children’s hoodies (various colours and sizes), one very small rain jacket, four pairs of shin pads, one pair of football boots, three pairs of goalie gloves, two (empty) lunch boxes, three plastic drink bottles and a black shoe. No, I am not planning to open a sports shop or man a car boot sale. I am merely (albeit optimistically) carrying around items left behind at football camps and very occasionally training though most of the training lost property ends up, rather damply, in the venue’s metal container in the unlikely event that it is asked for.
If any of these things had names on, however, I would gladly research them in our system, make a phone call or three, arrange an assignation and bingo, a treasured hoodie or favourite lunch box could be restored to its grateful owner (or parent-of-would-be-grateful-owner as it is in most cases).
Why does so much get left behind? Well, if children were perfect little human beings, they wouldn’t leave anything behind. But at the end of the camp/training day they are excited. They have just helped collect up at least thirty cones, they have scored at least four goals, single handedly (or leggedly if there was such a word) and their mother or father has just promised to buy them a scrumptious ice cream on the way home. Why should they remember that hoodie that they threw off two hours ago, or the boots they changed out of, perhaps even before lunch?
Well, that’s where training comes in. Not just for football but for valuing all the precious things they are provided with by their kind, doting parents and families. I’ve seen parents distraught that their child has lost a waterproof on its first outing, a hoodie that was a present from abroad by a relation, a hat that was a souvenir of a wonderful holiday, etc. etc. So it’s up to all of us to make sure our children THINK before they go rushing off at the end of a camp or training. That they learn they won’t get instant replacements without any fuss or bother. If they are encouraged to keep all their (named) belongings together during the day or training session, this will make it a lot easier. They will learn to be organised and tidy. And my car boot can go back to being used for what it should be used for – goals, bibs, cones, footballs ..... Margaret, Parent Host