Premier League Kicks

George Friend and a Foundation staff member pose for a photo with a group of children in a sports hall

Premier League Kicks began as a pilot project in London between the Premier League and the Metropolitan Police in 2006, with the aim of using football to bring communities together and engage with young people.

Kicks uses the power of football and appeal of professional football clubs brands from the Premier League and Football League to engage young people who may otherwise be difficult to reach in some of the most disadvantaged areas of the country.

The vision is to ‘build safer, stronger, more respectful communities through the development of young peoples’ potential.’

Kicks works closely with partnerships such as Youth services, local councils, the Police, Green Sky Fitness and ‘Prison? Me? No Way!’ to help raise aspirations of the young people that attend, and encourage them to make the right choices in the community.

All of the PL Kicks coaches are F.A qualified, however the programme isn’t exclusively about football. We offer a variety of different active such as: kick boxing, street dance, graffiti art workshops and prison van workshops to name a few.

Further to these activities, Kicks gives the young people who attend the choice to choose what activities they would like to take part in through an initiative called PL Youth Voice. The initiative is designed to get young people to share their ideas and experiences to not only aid their learning, but the learning of their peers too.

The young people who attend Kicks on a regular bases and have a good attitude are given rewards, and are invited to various trips across the year. These include regular trips to the Middlesbrough FC first team games, playing against other Kicks teams from professional clubs such as Sunderland, Stoke and Leicester, and trips to theme parks like Flamingo Land.

The tournaments are designed to break down barriers between different wards across Teesside, bringing all sites together and allowing them to socially mix with other young people they have never met. It also gives them a sense of pride that they are representing their area in national competitions.

Premier League Kicks also raises the aspirations of young people in the most deprived areas across Teesside with qualifications, such as ‘Junior Football Leaders Awards’ and’ FA Level One Coaching Awards’ across different sports. There are also volunteer opportunities which have led to casual paid hours on the Kicks program. The coaches build up a strong positive bond with the young people, becoming role models, and always reinforcing that they can achieve anything if they put their mind to it.

For more information contact Liam on Liam.watson@mfcfoundation.co.uk or 01642 757674


MFC Foundation Join Daughters And Dads Active And Empowered Project

We’re delighted to announce we will be part of the Daughters and Dads Active and Empowered project for the next two years.

Women in Sport, in partnership with the Fatherhood Institute, EFL Trust and the University of Newcastle (Australia), is excited to announce that we are the latest to join a growing band supporting this initiative.

We’ll join Leyton Orient Trust, The Albion Foundation (West Bromwich Albion), Foundation of Light (Sunderland AFC) and the Stoke City Community Trust for year two of the project, alongside Fulham FC Foundation, who were part of the project’s inaugural pilot year.

In total, six clubs will deliver the programme for the next two years, supported by Sport England’s Families Fund through National Lottery funding.

The Daughters and Dads Active and Empowered programme has been developed by the University of Newcastle (Australia) and Professor Philip Morgan and his team.

The programme aims to increase physical activity levels, sports skills and social-emotional wellbeing of girls 5-11 years by challenging stereotypes about playing sport and physical activity and increase fathers’ confidence and ability to act as role models in relation to their daughter’s participation.

Rachel Horsley, Girls Football Lead Officer here at MFC Foundation, said: The philosophy behind the programme is very much in keeping with many of our own. We reach across the area with many programmes, but this one is just that little bit different. Programmes like Daughters and Dads help everyone come together, not just the dads and their daughters. Some find it easier than others to show their feelings, or to actively support and encourage. This programme helps on so many levels. It helps emotionally and physically and brings an understanding that the two work together – just like dads and their daughters.”

Eleven families took part in the project’s inaugural year, and the programme had a great impact on those that took part.  Initial findings suggest:

  • Father and father-figures on the programme mentioned growing a stronger bond with their daughters and suggested they would increase the amount of family activity they do as a result of taking part.
  • All the girls that took part in the project showed a strong belief that girls are just as capable as boys at physical activity and should be able to enjoy the same opportunities, both individually and with their family.

Women in Sport and the project partners will explore these initial findings in greater depth with a larger sample size to understand any significant impact in year two and three.

Lee Warren, Innovation Manager for the DAD Project, said: We’re delighted to have five new clubs involved in this project for the next two years alongside continuing our partnership with Fulham who have built strong foundations. We’ve already started to see the impact that the Daughters and Dads Active and Empowered programme can have on its participants and the long-term lifestyle changes that it can deliver. We’re looking forward to seeing these clubs support more families in their local communities to get active.”

Mike Diaper, Executive Director Children, Young People and Tackling Inactivity, at Sport England said: Following a successful first year of testing the Daughters and Dads programme, we are really pleased that our National Lottery investment can now help to extend its reach into new areas across England.   We know that we need to continue to do more to help girls and less affluent families get active, and one thing that hinders this are gender stereotypes that can cause families to believe that physical activity is less important for girls than boys.  We also know that parents and carers often see their role as helpers and less as role models in encouraging their children to be active. This programme, based on a model from Australia, is addressing these challenges and we look forward to seeing the results of this in the North East, West Midlands and London.”

For more information on the Research and Advice Service and Women in Sport’s work visit www.womeninsport.org.