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Game For Life framework adapted for Youth-at-risk

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Sport Singapore (SportSG) and the Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding on the adaptation of SportSG’s Game For Life (GFL) framework for youth-at-risk. 

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Low Jiaren, Deputy Director, Leadership Development (SportSG) and Ms Elaine Loo, Director, Central Youth Guidance Office (MSF), after signing the MOU. Photo: Sport Singapore

“GFL has been adapted for youth-at-risk by focusing on the social-emotional needs that impact the growth and development of youth,” MSF's Central Youth Guidance Office said.

GFL (Youth-At-Risk) provides a framework for agencies to plan their programmes to meet the identified needs of the youths and develop character through the process.”

The MSF worked closely with Sport Singapore, National Arts Council and various youth agencies to ensure that the adapted framework would be suitable for use in both sports and arts programmes.

It has rolled out GFL(YAR) under the Youth-At-Risk Engagement (YARE) framework to voluntary welfare organisations that use sport and/or arts as a strategy to engage youths-at-risk.

Youth workers have to undergo a half-day training session to get familiar with the framework, and to date, a total of 110 youth workers from 22 agencies have been trained.

The GFL(YAR) course will also be made available at the Social Service Institute in 2017.

The original Game For Life framework was developed over a one-year period starting in 2012, where local and foreign experts were brought in to help create a validated educational resource.

After a year of consultations with stakeholders and potential beneficiaries, the GFL framework and toolkit was finally launched in 2013 during the Leadership Symposium organised by SportSG.

“It provides a structured approach to how you design a sporting activity so that certain values can be inculcated in participants as they play” said Low Jia Ren, Deputy Director of Leadership Development at Sport Singapore. 

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Low Jia Ren, Deputy Director of Leadership Development at Sport Singapore, gives MSF a brief about the Game For Life Framework. Photo: Sport Singapore

The GFL framework consists of three parts: the values to be imparted, the developmental platform through which the values are imparted, and the actions by the instructor to inculcate and reinforce the values.

And this framework – which is the first of its kind in Singapore – can be used in any form of activity, sport or curriculum.

Whether it be leadership, responsibility or teamwork, all values can be better taught through an intentionally designed activity plan based on the GFL framework.

Citing an example, Low said: “Let’s say I want to teach teamwork to my players during a football training session, where a practice match is used as a developmental platform. I will modify some rules of the game, for example, you can only score after every player has touched the ball once. This will encourage every player to run into open space and provide options for their team mates to pass them the ball. By doing so, it reinforces the idea that everyone has to work together for the team to succeed.”


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