On Friday 7th June we hosted our 5th Girls' Football Festival welcoming 140 pupils from 5 of our local primary schools.
This year pupils in from primaries six and seven from Forthview, Granton, Pirniehall, St David’s and Wardie Primary Schools took part in our football festival. In addition to the pupils participating, over 20 young volunteers from The Academy and from Craigroyston Community High School were on hand to help deliver the event.
“The volunteers are at the heart of what we do at The Academy and this year we utilised them by giving them a greater role in the planning and delivery during the morning. This provided them with valuable leadership skills" - Jude Shepherd, Girls' and Women's Football Development Officer.
The day included football activities but also a smoothie bike and face painting. ‘Hey Girls’, a social enterprise that focuses on education around periods and period poverty in the UK, were on hand to answer questions and debunk some period myths.
"It was really encouraging to see so many girls engaging with us.” - Molly Brown, Hey Girls Education Programme Manager
With the World Cup also kicking off on Friday, the Academy’s Community Coaching Department designed a resource pack that encouraged pupils to research the different countries taking part in the event. Young people at The Academy’s youth clubs painted flags to decorate the pitches. This year the Academy also worked in partnership with two international charities that promote learning, development and empowerment for girls through sport. With the support of The Academy’s Community Coaching Department, Parikrma Foundation in India and Together in Sport Rwanda ran sports festivals that also took place on Friday.
“We were delighted to continue our link with Parikrma Foundation but also expanding to Together in Sport Rwanda. This was a chance to encourage young girls to participate in sport where they may not otherwise have the chance. Over the 3 events we had over 500 girls take part which is incredible and we hope to continue these links going forward.” - Nichola Sturrock, Community Coaching Manager.
The event was supported generous sponsorship from Hanya Partners. Martin Ewart from Hanya took the time to pop down to see the festival in full swing.
“It’s great to see the energy and enthusiasm of the staff and pupils and everyone having such a great time. We are especially proud to support the festival this year when it’s impact has extended over three continents" - Martin Ewart, Hanya Partners.