Welcome to the March edition of Street Soccer Spotlight.
On Monday 22 February, the Prime Minister made an important announcement to alert the nation to the Government’s roadmap out of lockdown. And I know it gave many people across the country a great lift.
I am particularly pleased as since then, we have now been in pro-active discussions with several of our Premier League Club partners on the community side, talking through intended next investments into new Academy programmes.
From 29 March, all outdoor organised adult and children’s sport, such as grassroots football, will be allowed and I am grateful that we are therefore looking to get active and re-started again with ‘physical provision’, from the beginning of next month. Initially, we are most likely to see our Academy programme run in partnership with Leicester City, Tottenham Hotspur, West Ham Utd, Liverpool and Sheffield Utd – as well as in our home County of Kent.
But we are of course unaware at this stage – of just how damning this lockdown and pandemic will prove to be for those we typically support. For one, unemployment is at its highest level in almost five years, with younger and typically lower-paid workers bearing the brunt of job losses.
Added to this is the obvious mental health care concern. According to the Centre for Mental Health, more than 500,000 children under the age of 18 will require mental health care due to the devastating economic and family pressures caused by the ongoing effects of the pandemic – which is one of the key reasons why former England International, Gary Lineker, came on board in support of our new mental health and wellbeing ‘matchFit’ app.
As Gary commented in connection to his support of the Street Soccer Foundation in an article published in The Telegraph last weekend: “I think it’s (sport) vitally important for all sorts of issues, really: mental health, physical health and all-round well-being.”
I know the demand of our service provision is even greater than before. Which is why – now more than ever – we want to count on the support of our incredible Supporters: our Club Members, Partners and Sponsors. Our community. To invest in more programmes. To help more young people. And to make a tangible difference to others. I know we can – and will.
Together, Changing Lives through Football. Keith
The Importance of Mental Health – Gary Lineker supports matchFit app
Gary Lineker is supporting the Street Soccer Foundation’s new mobile app, matchFit, to help people who have struggled over the past year.
“Sport gives you much more than any subject, probably, apart from reading and basic arithmetic,” he insists. “It should be the third most important thing on the curriculum, after English and maths.”
Have you watched the latest episode of our “#StreetSoccerUtd” Podcast show? We meet with David Breaker, of Breakthrough Life Coaching – and it’s a must-watch.
David was in his late 20’s. Long-term unemployed. A gaming addict. And 32 STONE in weight.
Watch and listen to the fascinating and honest discussion as David recounts how it happened, the trigger for change – and how and why he committed to his incredible transformation.
Watch the interview in full now via our official YouTube channel: www.youtube.com/streetsoccerfoundation.