Since receiving the standard level award in June 2010 Alness United have continued to grow and develop on and off the park. Peter Budge the Scottish FA Development Officer for the Highlands presented the award to the club at a friendly Under 15 game against the Inverness Street League Select which was attended by all of the clubs coaches. The club worked closely with Peter to complete the higher criteria set out to achieve the development level award. Much of this work had included the coaching staff and volunteers attending Scottish FA coach education courses at children’s and youth level and continually updating their 2009 three year development plan which hopefully will enable us to increase our youth and community participation. All of this has allowed Alness United to participate in the North Caledonian League and the Highland, Moray, Ross-Shire Youth Leagues as well as several Soccer Sevens and Fun Fours Festivals covering most of the highland area. All of the above tied us in nicely with the Scottish FA’s National Player Pathway Programme. Youth coordinator Tommy Regan says “ We are delighted to receive the Scottish FA’s Quality Mark Development Award. To achieve the development award was very challenging as we had to recruit several more volunteers and continue or even better in some areas the standards that the club had set. We also have two great partnerships in place with Alness Academy (Secondary) with Les MacKay and Active Schools (Primary) with Wilma Kelt which is of great benefit to all parties in terms of facilities and coaching resources. We are in agreement that the link between the club and the schools works very well. We now have over 100 young players participating in organised football, coaching and training activities every week with games most weekends. None of this would have been made possible without the hard work and dedication of our excellent committee, volunteers and coaches.”