Six coaches at a west Belfast-based football club have progressed through the Irish Football Association’s Level One Coaching Award, thanks to support from George Best Belfast City Airport.
The financial support which St. Oliver Plunkett Football Club received from the airport’s Community Fund meant coaches could take extra time to complete the IFA course, which consists of theoretical and practical sessions aimed at providing coaches with a certified Child Protection module and a first aid qualification as well as information and examples of how best to coach players.
Neil McKee of St. Oliver Plunkett FC said:
“With an ever-growing club, the development of our coaches is a key priority for us to ensure our players are getting the best coaching possible.
“Having been involved in the local community in west Belfast for nearly 50 years, we are a staple for many people living here and have a positive influence on our community through sport, teamwork and healthy competition.
“We wouldn’t be where we are without our coaches, members and the local community, so a massive thank you to them for their support over the years. Developing our coaches can be a costly expense, so it was fantastic to receive financial support from Belfast City Airport. As a club we are extremely grateful.”
The football club has been in operation since 1969 and encourages people of all ages to join, meet new people, learn new skills and get fit. Recently, the club won the 2017 UEFA Grassroots Club of the Year.
Rory Goldring, Airport Fire Service Crew Commander at Belfast City Airport, said:
“Belfast City Airport is delighted to be able to work with St. Oliver Plunkett FC and help facilitate the training of six new coaches at the club. It is clear that the club is not only respected in the local community, but also in the wider football community having been named the 2017 UEFA Grassroots Club of the Year.
“At Belfast City Airport, we have a dedicated Community Commitment Plan which focuses on Community, People, Environment and Education. Through this, we are able to create meaningful relationships with our neighbours in the greater Belfast and north Down areas by supporting the local community with various projects, including education, sports and arts initiatives.”
For more information on the Community Fund or to find out how your group can apply for funding, please visit: www.belfastcityairport.com/community