As a proud sponsor of Broadclyst FC, Aspire is thrilled to support the development of the club's girl's team, The Broadclyst Lionesses. As a company, we have a responsibility to promote diversity and inclusion, and we believe that supporting opportunities for women in sports is a crucial part of this effort.
Broadclyst FC, located in the village of Broadclyst in Devon, has been a fixture of the community since 1992. Initially established with only a few youth teams, the club has grown into a Charter Standard football club with teams ranging from Under 6s to Under 13s, as well as two senior Saturday teams and one Sunday team.
As a non-profit organization, Broadclyst FC relies on the generosity of local businesses and individuals to provide the best possible facilities and equipment for its players. This support has allowed the club to explore the feasibility of starting a ladies' team and a girls' team, providing even more opportunities for young women to get involved in sports.
The coaches at Broadclyst FC are all volunteers, motivated by a desire to give young players the chance to enjoy the game of football and foster a sense of team spirit in a safe and supportive environment. We are proud to support their efforts and the work they do to promote women's sports in the community.
We spoke to the Coach of Broadclyst FC to get his thoughts:
What has been the biggest challenge in starting and growing the girls' team at Broadclyst FC?
When I reached out to local businesses for support, there was a lack of investment – they had no kit, no grounds and even negotiating using the changing rooms from the boys' team was proving a challenge. Football is massively set up for males, but when Aspire stepped forward only for the girls' team, it was great news for us all.
What has been the most rewarding aspect of coaching the girls' team?
Often girls want to play but are told they either can’t because there are no opportunities for them, or they’re reluctantly put into a boys' team making them nervous to compete or singled out as ‘the girl in the team’. It’s incredibly important for girls to be in it together and play as a girls' team. The sport is for everyone. We’ve had a huge take-up since then, receiving double the applicants and the waiting list is growing. There’s a real passion for girls to be given this opportunity.
How do the girls on the team benefit from being part of a sports team?
They get to socialise with others who they don’t necessarily share the same school with which creates a new friendship group, a real camaraderie team spirit both on and off the pitch. They support each other as teammates and see themselves as one team. They become a pack of ‘Lionesses’.
What are the club's plans for the future, in terms of promoting opportunities for women in sports?
The team I coach is the first under 12’s female team in the club. As they graduate, the club is looking to bring girls in as young as 6 to move up. By 2024 the goal is to have a female team for each age group up to under 18’s.
In Devon, we’re seeing a lot of local clubs starting female teams. We’re starting to see a positive impact of giving more opportunities for females to get into Football.
Aspire are committed to supporting organisations like Broadclyst FC that are working to promote diversity and inclusion in sports. We believe that everyone should have the opportunity to participate in and enjoy the benefits of sports, and we are proud to support the efforts of the club and its dedicated coaches.
If you would like to hear more about this or sign up to join our Diversity & Inclusion Charter, please get in touch.
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