Meet Ishmail Issat, our sports co-ordinator. Ishy is responsible for planning and managing the many sports activities you can take part in at the Youth Zone. Ishy also loves to talk, and knows more about sport than anybody we have ever met. So, if you see him, ask him anything you like and he will be more than happy to help.
How have you found working at the Blackburn Youth Zone?
It’s the best job I’ve ever had, I’m really enjoying working with the other staff and volunteers and building relationships with the young people.
What attracted you to the Sports Co-Ordinator role?
I worked as a sports co-ordinator in Liverpool and I’m from Blackburn originally, so to be able to come and work in my home town with the chance of helping to regenerate the town was something I’ve always wanted to do. I’d love it if one day my kids came here, and their kids came, I think it’s important to make a positive impact on the community.
What was your background before you worked at Blackburn Youth Zone?
I did a degree in Sports Development and lived and worked in Liverpool for six years before moving back to Blackburn. I worked as a sports co-ordinator working with kids from different areas helping to build stronger communities.
What projects are you currently working on?
At the moment it’s the Senior Sports Week, focusing around the Olympics, we’ve had judo, cricket and dance instructors in so far and we’ve set up a Football academy.
What forthcoming projects are you most excited about at Blackburn Youth Zone?
I’m currently working on a tailored sports programme which will suit all the members needs and has something that everyone will enjoy. It’s important to work in teams, and we’re looking to set up football, netball and badminton teams and compete with other Youth Zones.
What’s been your favourite thing so far?
Definitely getting to meet Alan Shearer at Ewood Park, he’s been a hero of mine since I was nine! The staff residentials were a good chance to meet everyone and take part in team building exercises, everyone who works here is really excited about the Youth Zone which is great.