The Inclusion Project – one year on
As the year anniversary is approaching since the Swans Community Trust introduced their new Inclusion project, we look back at what a year it’s been for the fledgling initiative.
During the year, the scheme has continued to grow and now offers an array of sessions for individuals with a range of disabilities.
The formation of the Inclusion Project in November 2016 arose after the Premier League teamed up with BT Sport to offer football clubs’ community programmes the opportunity to improve access to sport for those with disabilities.
The Inclusion Project aims to identify talent through the Trust’s programmes to ensure that young people with disabilities reach their full sporting potential.
"Since the project’s inception, the programme has gone from strength to strength," said Richard Jones, the Community Trust’s senior inclusion manager.
"The evolution of the Project has been a real team effort across the Community Trust. This has been highlighted by the appetite and commitment of the staff to develop their knowledge around inclusion.
"Over the last 12 months, staff and key volunteers have attended various courses and workshops on how to work with specific impairment groups, giving them excellent comprehension."
Thanks to the Inclusion Project, the Trust has already established local community programmes have been adept to offer equal opportunity for all, whilst ensuring that they are sustainable and meet local demand.
"We currently have over 21 activities running each week, involving over 150 disabled participants," added Jones.
Initiatives and events introduced include the Disability Tennis Festival, Down’s Syndrome Adults and Junior Football, cycling sessions with BikeAbility Wales, Disability Sports Camps and Physical Literacy Sessions.
The Physical Literacy Sessions are a ten-week programme designed to strengthen participants’ fundamental movement skills; balance, speed, agility and coordination. Based at Pencoed Sports Centre, the Physical Literacy Sessions are delivered by our Community Trust coaches and are assisted by volunteers.
Speaking of the activities themselves, Jones added: "In terms of delivery we have established a number of bespoke and integrated physical programmes, from Tennis to Rock Climbing.
"Additionally, participation is encouraged through the Trust’s educational and vocational programmes such as Premier League Primary Stars at Pen-Y-Bryn School and the Sign Up To Success programme at Morriston Hospital.
"The strength of the programme is testament to both the volunteers and the partners we are working with and we hope to be able to continue to deliver a varied and exciting programme into the future."
As the Inclusion Project continues to grow, and with a range of new initiatives on the horizon, the Community Trust hopes that the Project will regenerate further into the wider community using the strength of the Swansea City AFC brand to collaborate with key organisations in the coming years.
If you want any information on our Inclusion Project, or to get involved, contact Richard@scfccommunitytrust.co.uk