The Every Player Counts project, delivered by Sky Blues in the Community, has supported Elliot to represent Coventry City.
Last season saw more than £1 million in grants awarded to English Football League Club Community Organisations to boost disability football across England through a project known as ‘Every Player Counts’.
The over-riding aim of Every Player Counts is to get more disabled people playing football and break down the barriers that have prevented them from doing so. Funded by the Wembley National Stadium Trust and administered by the EFL Trust, the Every Player Counts project is delivered by 25 EFL Clubs - including Sky Blues in the Community (the official charity arm of Coventry City Football Club).
Thanks to the project, over the last 18 months, Sky Blues in the Community have provided opportunities for over 700 children, young people and adults in Coventry and Warwickshire to benefit from football coaching sessions and the opportunity to play in affiliated football teams.
The Sky Blues work with local SEN schools (both Primary and Secondary), provide impairments specific sessions (Deaf, Blind, Down Syndrome, Power Chair and Frame Football) as well as giving people with disabilities the chance to represent Coventry City Football Club and participate in competitive football through their Ability Counts Teams.
Sky Blues in the Community are proud to celebrate one young man with Autism called Elliot who first became part of the Sky Blues Ability Counts Team in September 2017. Elliot’s father initially contacted Sky Blues in the Community’s Inclusion Coordinator Sam Flatley to enquire about opportunities for his son. Since then, Elliot has been a regular member of the team and has participated in the Birmingham Ability Counts League.
Every Player Counts project participant and Sky Blues Ability Counts Player, Elliot, told us: “I enjoy being part of the team because the sessions are fun and the coaches understand the players. There is a great team spirit and I have made friends. My experience so far has been 10 out of 10.”
Sky Blues in the Community’s Inclusion Coordinator, Sam Flatley, said: “Elliot has been a valuable addition to the Ability Counts set up, showing great commitment along the way. Since his first week with us, his confidence around the other players has grown and he continues to build positive relationships with his teammates. It has been great to see Elliot develop into a confident player during his first 6 months with the Sky Blues and I look forward to seeing him continue to progress.”
If you would like any further information about Sky Blues in the Community’s disability focused work or would like to get involved in the project, please contact Inclusion Coordinator, Sam Flatley, via Telephone: 024 7678 6313 or Email: firstname.lastname@example.org