England has a long history in disability and Para Football, with the FA committing to support development of this important area of the game through its first coordinated disability football strategy in 2004.
The FA identified that the Covid-19 pandemic has severely impacted the participation levels of persons with disabilities and therefore launched a new plan aiming to help those affected by providing a platform to overcome setbacks and bring people back together.
This exciting new plan, along with the FA’s commitment to ensure ‘Football For All’, is why they will be a hugely influential Role Model FA in the Para Football network.
PARA FOOTBALL – ROLE MODEL FAS
To support the development of Para Football worldwide, we are bringing together experienced national football associations/federations to provide good practice examples and showcase different ways of organising national para football programmes.
Para Football is delighted to be collaborating with leading football governing bodies from each world region. Our role model FAs have committed to partnerships with Para Football where they will support the international development of football for persons with disabilities and guide other nations on their journey.
Sam Turner, Co-Founder of Para Football, shared:
“Bringing the Football Association onboard with Para Football demonstrates the commintment of a national football association to not only provide football for all within their own country, but to support other countries around the world.
Launching ‘Football Your Way’ and their innovative work over the past year to bring greater awareness to Para Football shows an FA which intends to make a real difference.
We are proud that the FA support our work in Para Football and this positive collaboration will ensure we are stronger together in providing football for all.”
Baroness Sue Campbell, The FA’s director of women’s football, said:
“Football has an incredible power to bring people together, and we’re determined that disabled people have equal access to opportunities so that everyone can be involved in the game they love.
Our new plan for Disability Football, Football Your Way, will help create a sustainable culture that improves opportunities for disabled people, making the game fun and accessible, as well as providing world-class coaching.
We are sending a clear message: if you have a disability there are opportunities for you to participate, whether that’s for fun or through pan disability or impairment specific football, to enjoy the game and reach your potential.”
FOOTBALL YOUR WAY – THE FA’S GAMEPLAN FOR DISABILITY FOOTBALL
In October the FA announced an ambitious new three-year plan titled Football Your Way, to help develop, improve and raise awareness of Disability Football in England. The new plan is the first of its kind and covers seven key areas, demonstrating our commitment to ensuring that as part of the equality, diversity and inclusion strategy, disabled people have the opportunity to engage and participate in football their way, from grassroots all the way to the elite end of the game. The plan comes under the umbrella of the broader equality, diversity and inclusion strategy, which is about creating A Game For All.