"By developing an individual’s character, we give them a foundation and a framework for success. It’s not just about creating a winning mentality, but a positive mindset to achieve more, and to help others.”
Keith Sharpe, Group Head of Character Development


Character Development is at the very heart of our philosophy. Whilst everyone has the right to dream, we know that the first step on working towards that dream is by developing resilient leaders who have the skills and capabilities to succeed. This is why we have developed a formalised Character Development programme with regular sessions held across our organisation, from academy players and staff in Ghana to the first team in Denmark. We tailor our delivery at Right to Dream and FC Nordsjælland to be culturally relevant and specific to the needs of our players. By integrating Character Development into our curriculum and professional culture, it forms the spine of our development model and is one of the primary reasons our students sight for their success.


“The Character Development programme changed my life. I learnt how to behave in a different way and to approach challenges and new things with a growth mindset.” 
Ousseni Bouda, Millbrook School

How it works

Our curriculum is made up of three stages, depending on where the player is in our system. When our players travel between Denmark and Ghana, we take advantage of these international opportunities and integrate Character Development, as we do for all aspects of our work.

From our research of popular and sports psychological principles, we identified 7 character traits that would most help our students leverage their opportunity. We also considered the qualities of some of the world's most successful people to determine the key characteristics that would most benefit our students.

Character Development also feeds into our four core values:


We provide and create opportunities for students to flourish in leadership roles and in their daily experiences in the academy. Our pioneering badge system is an important mechanism for helping students make the most of their time in the academy and is just one of the evolving feedback mechanisms during their academy life.


Everyone has the RtD. CD equips our students with a framework to transform their dreams in reality. We provide an environment where we unlock the students’ potential to not only pursue their own dreams, but also actively supporting others pursue their dreams as well. Our students are thoroughly involved in transformative experiences at RtD and FCN - examples include our cultural home stay programme, the academy council, leadership summits, debates etc


Character Development plays an integral role in empowering our students to be instrumental in academy life. We develop their leadership capabilities on a daily basis with every student having responsibilities on a daily basis. Whether this is at mealtimes, in the class room or on the training pitch. Mentoring responsibilities, pastoral opportunities, speaking engagements and presentations, there are an abundance of opportunities for our students to build on their leadership skills. (May be touch on the leadership roles our grads go on to have - e.g. grads in US, pros who captain)


Our biggest success with our students and graduates is wanting to Giveback. They understand why having this broader responsibility to inspire and support other people is so important. They are positive role models. All academy age groups are empowered to take part in Giveback initiatives throughout their academy journey and several graduates adopt their own personal causes.

A great example of carrying giveback forward into one's professional career is Chicago Fire winger David Accam.


Read David's story


Significant Contribution Award

Every year, Right to Dream recognises students and graduates who have made a significant contribution to their communities or have greatly improved the lives of others through giving back. Watch the video below to see the incredible impact of our graduates.