Are you over 18, out of work and love football? Would you like join a course which combines getting education awards with football coaching awards and work placements? Then a new initiative beginning in September in your area could be for you! The FAI, VEC and local council have teamed up to provide a unique opportunity for people who are unemployed and out of formal education to get involved in an innovative project to help them back into the workforce.
PROJECT FUTSAL is a joint initiative between the Football Association of Ireland (FAI) and the Welsh Football Trust (WFT) with the core aim of utilising football as a social inclusion tool in order to facilitate innovative community regeneration.
The project has been designed through the cooperation of the FAI and the WFT and recently secured funding from the Ireland Wales Inter Reg IV Programme 2007-2013 under the theme of Sustainable Regeneration of Communities.
The overall aim of the project is to provide education and work opportunities for young people and to influence and assist community regeneration via employment and volunteerism. Research conducted to date has shown that the project is clearly achieving these objectives!
The project will see resources being invested in twelve communities by the Ireland Wales Programme, the Football Association of Ireland (FAI) and the Welsh Football Trust (WFT).
It will primarily involve the rollout of twelve Hubs (seven in Ireland ): a Hub is an education centre that will provide an academic year of adult education, personal development, football coach education and work/volunteer placements. Places on the programme will be offered to thirty participants from the local community at each Hub. Places on the programme will be offered to both men and women and it is hoped that course participants will be made up of an even number of male and female participants.
The main objectives are to increase participant’s employability and/or enhance their prospects of going onto further education. It is hoped that the extensive programme of football activity on each course will incentivise people to participate in the project.
Participants may be entitled to certain financial support while on the programme and interested people should check with their local social welfare office, job centre or VEC office to see if they are entitled to support through existing schemes.
FAI Project Manager, Derek O’Neill said:
This is a great opportunity for people who are unemployed to get involved in a project designed to broaden their education and help them back into the workforce.To date, 65% of people completing the course have gained employment while almost 20% have also gone on to higher level education. The added bonus of football being included in the programme should be attractive given it’s popularity in the XXXXX area and will also bring positive health benefits for participants. With the extra qualifications and work experience gathered on the course, it should provide a real boost to a person’s CV when looking for a job or to progress their education.
The seven courses begin in September in Ballymun, Corduff, Collinstown, Carlow, Clonmel, Wexford Town and Waterford. If you’re interested, you can apply NOW at www.projectfutsal.ie.