Bradford City FC Community Foundation’s disability programme “Bantams Breaking Barriers” delivers throughout the community pan disability football sessions, education, volunteering and employment, social events and fan consultation on access to the stadium and its match day provisions.
The Programme is designed to maximise engagement opportunities for all children and adults with any disability including physical, learning disabilities and difficulties and complex mental health needs through its work across the #BantamsFamily. Our work focusses on our five fundamental principles which are provision of Football, Fans, Fun, Future and most importantly Family.
As a registered charity, we do access funding for our programme, however, as is always the case, this does not cover all of our costs and we generate additional revenue by asking local businesses to lend their time, donate goods & services or provide sponsorship for items we need.
Keith Petty, MD of BIST Print is one such sponsor who has donated a significant amount towards our programme which we are using to support one of our main focus areas this year our volunteering and education, with over 40 volunteers and 10,000 volunteering hours invested into the community and the club through our project we are not only changing the lives of its participants but the minds of many as we empower and show the strength of disabled people and the value of their contribution to the community.
The members develop a sense of purpose and independence, gain invaluable work experience in an environment within which they are comfortable and we also provide education courses with accredited qualifications and life skills courses to enable them to overcome barriers that not everyone may need to face.
We have this year in partnership with the West Riding County FA enabled 15 disabled adults (11 men and 4 women) through their FA Level 1 course an inclusive course designed and delivered to ensure all participants regardless of disability can participate, this was only the third type of its course to be run in the country and the first in West Yorkshire. We had a broad range of disabilities including deaf participants, physical disabilities including cerebral palsy, learning difficulties and complex mental health needs. The course was adapted by the FA Tutors and the participants were supported on the course by Community Foundation coaching staff with whom they will gain some valuable coaching experience over the next coming months.
Colan Leung, Disability Football Development Officer at the West Riding FA said; “I’m over the moon that we have now completed our first ever FA Level 1 in Coaching Football (Inclusive Course) in West Riding. We have put together a specific FA Level 1 in Coaching Football course for people with a disability to support the local disability football workforce within West Riding.
We worked in partnership with Bradford City FC Community Foundation to recruit, retain and develop a high quality, diverse and motivated volunteer workforce to help develop disability football. The aim of this project was to up skill the workforce within the area and increase standards of coaching around the wider disability programme and I believe we have achieved that. West Riding County FA will now look to put another FA Level 1 in Coaching Football (Inclusive Course) together as there is a demand for it within the County.”
Keith Petty, BIST Group MD and Club Ambassador of Bradford City Football Club, upon presenting Bradford City Community Foundation with their sponsorship commented “I am delighted to be able to contribute to this very worthwhile charity. The work undertaken by the volunteers is commendable and it makes a positive difference to people’s lives”.
We also received sponsorship for this project from the Peter Greenwood Memorial Trust who paid for two participants through their fund which is for education for people who are deaf or hearing impaired, who from this project may become a wider partner with the FA supporting other courses across the UK. Peter Greenwood died in the Bradford City Fire along with his two sons and previously taught deaf pupils within the district, the memorial fund was set up by his wife Hazel in his memory.
For further information on our programme please see our website www.bradfordcitydfc.co.uk or contact Jaimie Dorward 07818 515639, firstname.lastname@example.org .