Keep up-to-date with the latest football activities in the Central region on Twitter @sfa_central
The Scottish FA’s Football Equity Project is helping to increase football participation among Ethnic Minorities in Falkirk.
Atta Yaqub, football equity officer for the Scottish FA’s Central region, has established a participation centre at Fallkirk Stadium on a Sunday night where players from the Ethnic Minority community can enjoy football coaching and take part in organised games.
Atta said: “The participation centre in Falkirk has become a great success for the project.
“We now have over 25 players coming each week to take part in football. We are able to let the players who come know about the array of football programmes on offer by the Scottish FA.
“We’ve already had players take part in our coach education courses.
“The participation centres are a terrific way to engage with Ethnic Minorities.
“The two main aims of the Football Equity project are to increase participation and raise awareness among Ethnic Minorities of what programmes the Scottish FA has on offer.
“The participation centres help us achieve this.
“Sunday night is a good time to suit the cultural and religious needs of certain communities.”
22-year-old Talhah Moqsud, from Falkirk, helped Atta form the centre through his local knowledge.
He explained: “Atta came to me and told me of his plans. I know a lot of people in the Ethnic Minority community in the Falkirk area and so made contact to let them know this centre was happening.
“The centre is growing all the time. The coaches are very welcoming and hospitable.
“I was even able to learn about the coach education courses the Scottish FA offers which I had never heard of before.
“I then signed up for one and have just completed my Level One youth coaching course.”
Taimur Shakeir, 26 from Falkirk, attends the centre every week. He said that without it, he doubts whether the participants would be playing football.
He said: “It’s a great programme for the community. If this kind of thing wasn’t set up, then we probably wouldn’t be playing and developing our skills.
“The Football Equity Project is a great thing and is making a real impact in the communities in and around Falkirk.”
The Football Equity Project is supported by the Scottish Government's CashBack for Communities Fund.
Watch our video explaining the project here.