The Bantams Disabled Organisation was officially launched at an event in the club's 1911 suite at the Coral Windows Stadium last Thursday (9th April 2015).
Attendees at the launch of BantamsDO included City chief Phil Parkinson and other members of club staff; Bradford Disability FC; The Shipley Bantams supporters' group and Bradford City Community Foundation.
Support for creating the group came from neighbouring clubs who already have well-established disabled groups, Leeds United’s Disabled Organisation were represented at the event, for example.
At the event, Parkinson spoke of the club's committment to the venture and he also stayed to do a Q&A session afterwards.
There were also speeches by several members of the organising committee and from Participate, the organisation who has provided initial funding for the group.
The Bantams are just the eighth professional football club in England and Wales to launch this type of organisation.
The group recognise that this reflects the support of the club at all levels. Disabled Organisations, such as our newly formed group, are supported by an organisation called level Playing Field who aim to ensure fair access to sport, for all.
The group has been established to help ensure that fans with disabilities of any kind can have a focal point where they can share experiences.
This will improve levels of support both on match days and away from the games whilst also providing the Football Club with a group who they can consult when looking at issues of accessibility.
We are also building links with other Disabled Supporters groups, for example through the presentation and meeting prior to our away game at Bramall Lane.
Founder of the BantamsDO, Kate Eveleigh said: "At Bradford City, we have several fans with disabilities and we had no place where we could all come together and discuss the ups and downs of supporting the team and the issues specific to people with disabilities.
"I am looking forward to working with our talented committee to provide this environment and support the club to build on their existing facilities.”
The group have already created strong links with other organisations and are thankful in particular to Bradford City Football Club for their immediate support for the concept; Level Playing Field for their help in establishing and supporting the organisation; Leeds United Disabled Organisation for sharing their experiences of setting up a group of this nature and also to the many organisations and individuals who attended the event or have sent messages of support.
To support the group or find out more about forthcoming events:
On Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/bantamsdisabledorganisation
On Twitter - https://twitter.com/bantamsdo
via e-mail - firstname.lastname@example.org