The Climbing Hangar has joined forces with the British Mountaineering Council to offer a group of kids from disadvantaged backgrounds a scholarship on its bouldering award scheme.
A group of 11-12 year olds joined the Climbing Hangar team on 15 November to begin Level 1 of the National Indoor Bouldering Award Scheme (NIBAS). All the kids are completely new to climbing and come from backgrounds where access to this kind of course is unlikely to be available to them.
The Climbing Hangar started to offer the NIBAS award in early November, with courses costing from £65 per child. The team behind the wall was keen to investigate opportunities to broaden participation and approached the British Mountaineering Council (BMC) about sponsoring a pilot course for local kids.
The BMC is funding 100% of the course costs with a view to understanding the positive impact of climbing amongst this group. If the idea proves a success the Climbing Hangar intends to continue to sponsor further intakes itself whilst encouraging other NIBAS accredited walls to do the same across the UK.
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Oz Fry, The Climbing Hanger head coach, said: “Bouldering is associated with a range of profound benefits which are particularly relevant for these kids. As a physical activity it’s really accessible so anyone can try it, and it opens up opportunities to build self confidence, meet a new social group, improve focus and collaborative skills and achieve a recognised award as they develop their skills. All this within a really safe, accepting environment."
James McHaffie, BMC youth and partnerships officer, added: "Climbing is a rapidly growing sport, and with its recent inclusion in the Olympics, the industry around it is offering all sorts of possibilities. A programme like this not only introduces kids to a new activity that they can learn from and enjoy; it can also open doors to new routes to employment in areas they might never have considered like coaching and the many jobs related to the outdoor industry. This initiative is a great opportunity to discover and nurture a passion into a lifestyle."
The Climbing Hangar, with facilities in Liverpool and London, offers a range of activities for all ages and abilities, including coaching, competiions and social events.
Further information can be found at www.theclimbinghangar.com or by calling 0151 345 0587.
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