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Cork Football For All Forum

Minister Kathleen Lynch officially launches Cork Football For All Forum 

Physical activity and sports participation by people with disabilities is extremely important to Cork Sports Partnership and its dedicated officer, the Sports Inclusion Disability Officer (SIDO) Padraig Healy.
Cork also has the support of the Cork SportsAbility Forum which is a network of physical activity and sports advocates from all the disability organisations, who together, work with the Sports Inclusion officer to increase rates and levels of physical activity and sports for all people with disabilities and in environments which are inclusive. Cork Football for All Forum was conceived within the SportsAbility Forum and is specifically targeting soccer in cork and as the terms of reference below show, it has a very focused ambition for the beautiful game in this region.

Cork Football For All ambassadors John Dunleavy and Alan Bennett of Cork City FC with players who participated in the blitz.

On Sunday, June 7th, at Leeds Park in Ballyvolane, the Cork Football for All Forum was launched by Kathleen Lynch, Minister of State for Primary Care, Mental Health and Disability. The launch event was celebrated with an “OPEN” 7 a side football event where about 50 players with and without disabilities, split into 4 teams and played a round robin event over the course of about 3 hours. Teams were mixed with players from various clubs on each team, and with some local knowledge used to balance ability across teams, a very competitive and evenly balanced competition evolved. We were delighted to have Cork Football For All ambassadors John Dunleavy and Alan Bennett of Cork City in attendance on the day to show their support.

“During the past 12 months or so, Leeds FC has worked closely with COPE Foundation in developing a relationship between their respective players which has allowed a truly inclusive and respectful relationship to flourish today. Leeds FC is also keen to lead the way for other clubs and through the new Forum will actively support inclusion across the sport in Cork. Other clubs such as Mallow FC, Carrigaline FC, Douglas Hall and Leeds FC attended the launch and we look forward to a fresh impetus being given to soccer for all who love the game in Cork” stated Cork FFAF chairperson Austin Brown.
The Cork Football for All Forum, comprises of representatives from across all soccer organizations in Cork. Men’s and Ladies soccer, Schoolboys and schoolgirl’s soccer, Special Olympics, the FAI, Cope Foundation and Cork Sports Partnership.

The Forum aims to:
1. Promote further development of the FAI Football for all programme in Cork
2. Establish an inclusive soccer network in the Cork region and facilitate a formal working group of key local football administrators who will agree and enact a plan to promote and develop inclusive football.
3. Ensure that CARA (the National Centre for Adapted Physical Activity) has a formal association with the project.
4. Create and promote public awareness of the availability of inclusive soccer in the Cork region.
5. Support and pilot the development of a FFA programme for adults and children in clubs in Cork.
6. Create a recognizable Cork FFA brand.
7. Develop a long term plan for soccer inclusion in Cork (10-20 years)
8. Research the viability of mainstream soccer clubs in the Cork region, appointing “Inclusion Officers” on their committees.
9. To assist with the establishment of Inclusion Officer positions within club structures and the training of such officers.

For more information on the Cork Football For All Forum contact:

Cairperson - Austin Brown austinbrowne3@gmail.com (086) 382 6876

Martin O’Leary OlearyM@cope-foundation.ie  087 9621620

Eddie Doyle eddiefella@gmail.com 085 8887396




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