AT THE HEART OF THE COMMUNITY
More than 2,000 children in Blackpool, Fylde and Wyre participated in physical exercise and educational activities over the summer through a series of unique enrichment programmes
The AFC Fylde Community Foundation was formed in June 2013, when the director of community development, Tom Hutton, was brought on board to develop the community department within the club, this involved creating links with key partnership organisations such as BAE Systems and many more.
More than 1,800 young people attended the foundation’s first-ever ‘Community Sports Camp’, which operated throughout the school holidays. Open to seven to 14 year olds, the summer camp encouraged physical activity through sport and also gave budding actors the chance to test their skills in performing arts workshops.
Lesser privileged children were also given the opportunity to take part thanks to support from Frank Whittle Partnership, who provided AFC Fylde Community Foundation with a grant of £5,000. This enabled social services to refer six children to the programme each week, who could participate free of charge via subsidised places.
To encourage and reward good behaviour, all ‘Community Sports Camp’ attendees were given the chance to be awarded with an AFC Fylde Junior Season Ticket at the end of the summer, with recipients selected based on their conduct.
As a result of funding from programme sponsor, Cuadrilla, a further 300 footie-mad youngsters also took part in the foundation’s bespoke football development programme, ‘Train Like A Pro’.
Over three days, professional coaches from the foundation helped attendees to develop their football skills and enhance their knowledge of the game, while educating them on the importance of good health and nutrition to support and improve performance.
All participants were also invited to train on the pitch ahead of AFC Fylde’s home game against Barrow last month, which was also televised on BT Sports.
Tom Hutton, director of community development at AFC Fylde Community Foundation, explained: “The AFC Fylde Community Foundation is dedicated to making lives better within the region.
“We are so proud of the amazing results that have come of this summer, reaching out to a record number of children in the Blackpool, Fylde and Wyre community over the summer holidays.”
“Thanks to the support of our various partners and positive feedback from children and parents alike, we are delighted to be able to announce that our ‘Community Sports Camp’ will also be returning this October half term.”
AFC Fylde Community Foundation has also recently recruited one of the region’s leading sportsmen to help raise the profile of the organisation’s great community work.
Scott Cardle, the current British Lightweight Boxing Champion, has pledged his support to spread the word about its commitment to creating local legacies, which benefit the Fylde Coast.
The AFC Fylde Community Foundation works across the Fylde Coast to educate, motivate and inspire future generations to build better communities for all. It delivers sports camps, coaching, education and personal development programmes, providing young people with multiple opportunities to improve their health and wellbeing.
To find out more, visit: www.afcfyldefoundation.co.uk