16 June 2015
Tuesday 16 June 2015
As the England team seek to progress from their World Cup group and with the FA Cup set for Saturday 1 August 2015 at Wembley Stadium, professional women’s football feels like it's getting some strong momentum now. And we want this to continue to inspire young females at a community level and encourage them to get involved locally.
On Saturday 13 June, at the Vauxhall Power League site, thanks to Lambeth Council, over 70 girls aged 9 – 13 played in the final Goals for Girls Festival of the 2014/2015 season.
Goals for Girls is about providing a platform to introduce young women into the game in a relaxed and fun environment. Scores aren’t kept, there’s no winners/losers – it’s purely about playing the game with friends and having the chance to participate amongst like-minded individuals.
Eight teams were involved. Some established in girls leagues, some just playing for their school, and for others like Oasis Children’s Venture and Balham Saints it was a chance to offer an opportunity to a group of girls who’d shown an interest in football in the past few months.
Does it work? 30 minutes after we finished we received a message from Adam Harman, Sport Development Officer at Oasis, saying: "The girls had a great day, they haven’t stopped talking about the festival on the bus home and are ready to play again immediately."
We were also fortunate to receive a visit from the SSE Women’s Fa Cup and each team was rewarded with handouts such as Bend it Like Beckham tickets and wristbands. Here’s what Katie Phillipson, Women & Girls’ Football Development Officer at the London FA had to say:
"This is the second year that London FA and London Youth have worked together to host our final Goals for Girls Festival of the season. It was great to see teams from schools, youth organisations and established football clubs all playing football and enjoying themselves. The success of the festival over the past two years shows how girls’ football is going from strength to strength in London."
John Jones, London Youth’s Sports Development Officer was equally positive:
"It was great to continue our strong partnership with the London FA and thanks to the Jack Petchey Foundation for sponsoring the teams. At London Youth, we’re committed to offering girls and young women increased access to quality sports opportunities and this festival ticks that box. I’m really looking forward to growing the festival in 2016 and engaging more youth organisations."