The first FIFA coach mentorship program (CMP), which saw 17 elite members of the women’s football coaching world guide 21 mentees through a year of acquiring new knowledge, skills and experience, concluded in Zurich.
The setting for the program’s inauguration in October 2018 was a fitting place to draw to a close more than a year of shared experiences that have spanned continents and generations.
The closing workshop gave an opportunity for the mentors and mentees to come together to discuss their experience of the CMP, in order for FIFA’s Women’s Football division to enhance the experience for the next cohort.
One of the most high-profile mentors was undoubtedly Jill Ellis – The Best FIFA Women’s Coach 2019 – who recently stepped down from her role as Head Coach of the US Women’s National Team, having led her country to back-to-back FIFA Women’s World Cup trophies.
A unique session during the workshop – titled ‘Coffee with Jill Ellis’ – saw the two-time world champion coach discuss her success and the CMP with FIFA’s Chief Women’s Football Officer Sarai Bareman.
“I think the program has been fantastic. The purpose of it, to bring people together, not just the mentors and mentees – but also to bring the mentors together, to spend time with my peers, has been fantastic. It’s about connecting people. The program will continue to evolve and grow. I think everybody involved with it has found the benefit in it,” Ellis said.
Across the year, mentors and mentees had the opportunity to meet in-person to learn from each other’s respective coaching environments, with those meetings supplemented by Skype calls and other contact throughout the course of the program.