Wrexham Inclusion Football Club
Wrexham Inclusion Football Club have been awarded insport Club of the Month for their continued work towards inclusion and for achieving insport Bronze standard.
Wrexham Inclusion Football Club was Formed in 2011 by a gentleman named Russell Jones who was working at the Cunliffe Resource Centre as an extra weekly activity for service users, the group trained at Glyndwr university and had a solid base of 15 attendees regularly and travelled to a couple of tournaments each year to keep the players engaged and excited. During these early days the club supported purely physical and mental health impairments and learning needs and were supported greatly by Universal Builders as sponsors. The club support service users aged 11 upwards into adulthood and beyond to access a fun, safe, friendly and competitive football environment specifically aimed and tailored for people with Disability, mental health, learning difficulties, social inclusion, and much more
We spoke to Wayne Greenshields the General Manager at the club about their involvement with the insport process “The club were guided to the insport set up through Disability Sport Wales and the Active Wrexham team after meeting with Terri Ritchie, the Disability Sport Wales Development officer for Wrexham, who introduced us to the process. From there we decided instantly that we wanted to be involved and reach the milestones needed to gain the certification as well as promoting inclusion through the pathway.”
“being part of the insport process has encouraged us to further our off field work, creating new pathways with new agencies, new contacts and offers a platform where people can find us”
Terri Ritchie, Disability Sport Wales Development officer for Wrexham said “It has been a pleasure working with the club to progress through the insport pathway due to their drive and passion for inclusion within their club and community. They are making a real difference to people demonstrating that they are contributing to Disability Sport Wales’s aim to ‘Transform lives through the power of sport’. Good luck to Wayne and the club! ”
We asked the club what advice they would have for other clubs going through insport “Don’t be afraid of change, generally all people want the same things, to be part of a team, group of friends, social network in whatever capacity that looks. Welcome people from all walks of life and backgrounds, ask questions, you can never ask too many questions. We always welcome people contacting us to discuss project implementation etc”
“We are aiming to be a GOLD club by the end of 2018 and further aim to collate the work we have done together by involving ourselves more with insport in whatever capacity we can - with the fundamental aim always being to affect more lives”
Mike Parry, Football Development Manager for FAW Trust said "It is fantastic to see the progress made by the club in recent years. The initial investment through our regional investment programme enabled Wrexham Racecourse Community Foundation to provide the groundwork for the club to flourish. Wrexham Inclusion FC have shown that football can have such a positive impact on peoples lives as demonstrated through the ‘We wear the same shirt’ campaign, making a significant impact raising awareness of mental health issues and changing the lives of many people in the local community. This award demonstrates the hard work and commitment to Disability football over the years by Wayne, Carl and many others associated with the club’’
Fiona Reid, CEO for Disability Sport Wales said “… the work that Wrexham Inclusion Football Club have done, as well as all the other clubs across Wales with, or working towards an insport club standard, are superb examples of the power of inclusive partnership working and the impacts which can occur as a consequence. We can’t achieve the change we need to see happening in Wales regarding inclusive opportunities and provisions in isolation of each other – working collaboratively, enthusiastically and creatively is absolutely key, and this is a great example all of those approaches”.