Introducing new community builder for Erewash

rsz_zoe_mckenzie

We’re really pleased to welcome Zoe McKenzie to CST as a Community Builder in Erewash. Here she tells us a little bit about herself and the conversations she’ll be having with the local community in Petersham in the coming months... 

Why I love sport

Sport has always been something I’ve loved, both in my spare time and for work. My favourite sport is netball which I have played since being little, but I generally enjoy most sports. When I suffered a knee injury I took up wheelchair basketball for Derby Wheel Blazers which was fantastic. It gave me a new focus and a way to keep my netball skills fresh.  I’m also the head coach for my local club – Stapleford Netball Club, Nottinghamshire Netball Academy U13 and assistant coach with AOC National Netball Squad.

I previously worked for a local sixth form college in the sports department and a lot of this work was around talking to the students and working with them to develop activities they were interested in. So when I applied for the role at CST I felt like I was already doing what they were asking for.  It just makes total sense for it all to come from the community.

Working in Petersham

rsz_zoe_playing_netball (1)I’ll be working in Petersham and although there are some similarities to the way I’ve worked before, this is still a massive change for me. At the college I had easy access to the students so facilitating conversations with them was pretty simple. With residents it’s more challenging because you don’t have that easy access. 

When I first started I thought it would immediately be ‘go, go, go’, but it’s become clear it’s a much slower process. That’s not in a bad way. It’s about being patient – to create strong relationships with the community I need to move at the speed of trust.  

When I first visited Petersham I was expecting nearly nothing in the way of facilities but they’ve actually got a lot going on. The issue is there isn’t a lot of communication about how to access or make use of them.      

Looking forward to getting started

Over the next few months I’m looking forward to having conversations with and connecting with local people and developing relationships as well as understanding what's going on in the community.

I know the role won’t be without challenges but I’m looking forward to taking them on. 

If you want to get in touch with Zoe you can email zoe@communitysportstrust.co.uk