In addition to the many new football teams that will be created, the Grow the Game grants will also allow for 120 volunteer coaches to become trained up in the relevant qualifications in order to deliver age and ability appropriate coaching at the new teams.
The Grow the Game scheme is funded by The FA and delivered by the Football Foundation. The programme is designed to increase participation at the lowest levels of the game with grants of £1,500 available for each new team that a club creates.
Applications from demographics identified as having been traditionally underrepresented in the sport, such as women and girls, male teams of Under-14s and upwards and disability teams, were prioritised.
The funding can help a burgeoning club pay for the fundamentals, including: FA coaching courses, FA league affiliation costs, referees’ fees, first aid kits and football kit and equipment.
Shaun Waite, Football Development Officer (Participation) at Leicestershire & Rutland County FA, said: “As a County FA we are always trying to get more people involved in the nation’s favourite game, and the addition of 55 new teams will certainly help to increase participation across Leicestershire and Rutland. We’re all looking forward to seeing these new teams get started.”
Kelly Simmons MBE, The FA’s Director of Participation and Development, said: “The proposition of 55 new teams and 120 new coaches across the Leicestershire area is extremely encouraging and this investment – which is provided by The FA and delivered by the Football Foundation – means that participation in our national game will increase, especially amongst underrepresented groups.”
Paul Thorogood, Chief Executive of the Football Foundation, said: “This is excellent news for grassroots football in Leicestershire. Grow the Game, which is delivered by the Football Foundation, is about creating long-term participation increases and getting people playing who otherwise would not have had the opportunity to do so. The FA deserves credit for directing investment to help train new coaches and get teams playing in affiliated leagues.”