NGC recently hosted an online career and life skills development symposium for athletes from its youth elite programme (YEP). The programme was launched in 2017 by NGC, in partnership with the National Association of Athletics Administrations (NAAA).

In a press reelase, NGC said even amidst the covid19 pandemic and the need for physical distancing, the company has "made it a mandate to continue developing our CSR partners and finding innovative ways to implement planned programmes."

YEP focuses on social media etiquette, mental health and career guidance. It was intended to build the capacity of talented young athletes beyond their track and field careers and further develop them into well-rounded, contributing members of society.

The programme facilitates the holistic development of young track and field athletes between the ages of 14 and 20, who have been identified as having "podium-potential" by 2024. It aims to have a cadre of athletes who will be prepared physically, emotionally, socially and technically to improve their confidence and performance in the sport.

The August 18 symposium exposed the athletes to the tenets of problem solving, accountability for their actions, collaboration, analytical thinking, diversity and self-awareness. They were urged to stay focused despite challenges being faced globally in light of the ongoing effects of the covid19 pandemic.

According to NGC manager, Corporate Communications Lisa Burkett, “This online symposium comes at a time when these athletes would have ideally been wrapping up participation in local track and field activities in their lead up to regional and international finals. The entire world is still finding its footing as we all aim to exist in our new normal. My advice to them will be to stay in shape, keep focused, do not give up hope, and know that your time will soon come.”

Ian Carter, co-ordinator of the NGC NAAATT YEP at the NAAA added, “The session was excellent and the presenters were great and quite engaging, so much so that I found myself also practising my social media etiquette following the symposium. The athletes were quite engaged and seemed to have enjoyed the session immensely.”

NGC said it remains committed to developing the next generation of high-performing athletes through the NGC NAAATT YEP.