Youth Impact Programme (YIP)

Youth Impact Programme (YIP)

How it all started in Counties Manukau...

In 2009 Maori TV screened a documentary on Riki Ellison life.   In the documentary Riki explained how he reflected on the value of sport and how it changed the direction of his life. He also reflected on what his step-father had taught him about the importance of education.  He started the Youth Impact Programme in Los Angles to address youth gang issues and get the youth to make better choices.  The Youth Impact Programme differs from other sport programmes as it combines numeracy and literacy education with sport coaching.

Russell Preston CEO CM Sport saw the documentary and believed this programme could be introduced to South Auckland Youth.  Russell has been in contact with Riki over the last few years which lead to an invitation to observe the Youth Impact Programme in America.

CM Sport was granted funding from the ASB Community Trust to research the US programme and create a successful model for New Zealand settings.   ASB Community Trust provided $10,000 while CM Sport has contributed $25,000.

The project managers were Geoff Moon, Community Coaching and Development Manager for CM Sport and Sheryl Law, Team Leader of Primary Sport Manurewa.  They researched the programme using the web and created a pilot programme to run in the first week of the July  2011 school holidays.  The programme in July was delivered with the help of other experienced CM Staff (a number like Sheryl are ex school teachers). 

The Youth Impact Programme was successfully run from 18-22 July.  Russell, Geoff and Sheryl then visited the 4th and last week of the Youth Impact Programme at Stanford University.   Their visit to Stanford and evaluation of the Youth Impact Programme was greatly enhanced by the development and delivery of the Manurewa YIP pilot programme.   As a result of the visit, they concluded that they had created the Manurewa YIP pilot programme true to the America YIP format with enhancements that better suits the cultural differences of New Zealand children.

The Manurewa YIP pilot ran again in the 1st week of the October 2011 school holidays as per the original agreement with children, parents and schools. 

About Riki Ellison...

Riki Ellison was born on Monday, August 15, 1960 in Christchurch New Zealand and is
a famous American football player.

Years and teams he played for:
1990 - 1992 for Los Angeles Raiders
1983 - 1988 for San Francisco 49ers

A small town boy of Ngai Tahu descent, Ellison relocated with his mother and step-father to the United States as a teen.  After watching his first game of gridiron he was hooked.

“My stepfather took me to the 1972 game against Arkansas USC and I was in total awe of the whole experience.  The team had these cardinal and gold uniforms that looked like warriors. I wanted to be one of those warriors.”

Success in the college league led to a contract with the legendary San Francisco 49ers.  It was with this team that the line-backer won an incredible three Super Bowls, playing alongside legends of the game Ronnie Lott and Joe Montana.

Today, Riki still plays a defensive role but no longer on the football field.  Ronald Reagan’s famous 1983 speech, calling for a missile defence system as an alternative to the cold war, scored a touchdown with the sports star, who began campaigning for the cause in his off-season. 

Riki founded the “Missile Defense Advocacy Alliance” upon retiring from pro-football in 1992, and has become one of America’s greatest authorities on the subject.  His expertise has been put to use in the multi-million dollar defence projects “Venture Star” and “X33”, and he is the ‘go-to’ guy for comment on national defence issues for major U.S. networks MSNBC and FOX, as well as for news service Reuters and newspaper The Washington Post.

Says Acting Under Secretary of State Arms Control and International Security John Rood: “He’s been able to succeed in not just in one or two or three very competitive fields, but in all of them and I think that is something special.”


Key Partners:
SPARC Aktive Auckland Sport and Recreation Honda ASB Trust Fairfax Auckland Council John Walker Find Your Field of Dreams Foundation New Zealand Community Trust