At a time when the Worcestershire FA have commenced Safeguarding validation visits to training and matches, across all of their Charter Standard affiliated clubs, and whilst reading the club’s history, to include on our website, it struck me an important time to focus on what role we all have in looking after the young football players at our club. Launched in 2001, The FA Charter Standard Programme is The FA’s accreditation scheme for grassroots clubs. It’s Goal is to raise standards in grassroots football, support the development of clubs, whilst recognising and rewarding clubs for their commitment and achievements. With this in mind, The FA Charter Standard accreditation is awarded to clubs rigorously adjudged to be well-run, sustainable and, most importantly, those that prioritise child protection, quality coaching and implementation of the Respect programme.
A Charter Standard Community Football Club since 2009, maintenance of this prestigious accreditation is at the core of what we do as Badgers. Scrutiny of all we achieve is unavoidable but sharing of knowledge and preparation can avoid failure. Failure whilst supporting the children who are part of our club is unthinkable, hence why we ask that at all sessions:
Having recently completed the FA Safeguarding module myself this topic of adults playing in sessions was a recurring theme. Anyone from the County FA attending a Badger training session, and observing adult coaches playing in junior coaching sessions, would raise immediate alarm bells. Obviously anyone that has coached a junior football side will have, at some time, played between the sticks, and seen themselves as the next Joe Hart, but this is still seen as poor practice. Coaches should be creative and think of alternatives;
Coaches delivering a demo to support learning can be good practice but coaches ‘playing’ in sessions is not recommended and therefore we should all follow the advice.