Seventy girls from Mauricewood, Paradykes, St Luke’s and Mayfield Primary Schools had an afternoon of football and fun at a Tesco Bank Football Challenge Festival in Penicuik Park recently.

The event was one of eight planned festivals across Penicuik, Bonnyrigg, Dalkeith and Newtongrange in the coming weeks. 

The Tesco Bank Football Challenge is a four year community programme born from a partnership between the Scottish FA and Tesco Bank.

The programme introduces football to primary school children at schools across Scotland and gets them engaged in a healthy and active lifestyle. from the Scottish FA delivered six weeks of football to primary two and primary three year old children across Midlothian in October and November of last year, while over 15,000 children across Scotland have been involved in the programme in the last six months.

Due to the success of the programme in Midlothian a number of other festivals have been scheduled before next season's Tesco Bank Football Challenge begins in August.

Scottish FA Development Officer Keith Wright said:
“The Tesco Bank Football Challenge is a great initiative which is all about getting the young kids taking part and having fun.  It is not only about learning basic football skills but also about getting children involved in physical activity and leading healthier, happier lives.”

Adele Mills, Community Investment Manager at Tesco Bank commented: “Tesco Bank aims to make a positive contribution to the Edinburgh area both in the way we do business and by supporting community initiatives"

"Football is central to this programme, acting as a vehicle for fitness and the development of both physical and social skills."

"Our aim is to see hundreds of boys and girls from across the city participating in football on a regular basis and having fun. We hope our initiative gives the kids an experience that will stay with them for life and ultimately encourage regular involvement in the game.”

Tesco Bank is investing over £1 million in the programme and will use the power of football to get six to eight year-old children active. The aim is to reach 72,000 boys and girls of all levels and abilities in, at least, 1,600 primary schools across Scotland’s 32 local authorities with over 500,000 coaching hours.