In January 33 clubs attended the East Region 2017 Quality Mark Awards evening to celebrate and recognise the good work going at clubs, notably the volunteers, coaches and many staff that year on year continue to develop and contribute to our game. Speaking on behalf of all the East Region Football Development staff, Club Development Manager Gavin Tinley noted the incredible passion and drive within some of the community clubs to develop the game at a local level, from growing the game to developing facility projects. The evening also provided an environment for clubs to network as well as discuss their experiences and best practice. To support bringing some of these stories to life the East Region developed some video case studies.
Each year the number of adult clubs engaging with the Scottish FA Quality Mark scheme is increasing, and more so, the number of youth and adult clubs coming together to develop a stronger player pathway within their local community. Carnoustie Panmure are highlighted in the footage as a fantastic model of many others out there; that by developing relationships and working together will help in the transition from youths to the adult game. Across the East, Carnoustie Panmure have long been regarded as an excellent “community club model” housing a strong player pathway under one identity. In 2013 the club were invited to visit Sweden with the Scottish FA to see how Swedish clubs operate and function as big strong community clubs. This inspired the club on their return to develop a similar model, and after 3 years hard work of bringing football together, they now have a community club charity with a one club model structure beneath to support the game in their area.
Further still, the need for football to work together is becoming more the “norm” across different clubs and in 2017 Carnoustie Panmure buddied up with neighbour club rivals Monifieth Athletic, working together to support the growth and development of the girls game across the Panmure area. This has allowed a Panmure Focus Group to be established and discuss the wider picture of football, share resources and understand the priorities for the footballing community.
Football for Life is the Scottish FA’s vision and this is documented in more detail within our One National Plan 2017-2020. Community clubs are playing a key role to contributing to our game achieving this along with a partnership approach.