Hartpury College has been announced as a key partner on a national scheme aimed at driving up female participation in football.
For the third year in a row, Hartpury has been selected as one of only 20 colleges to host the Football Association’s Women’s Football Apprentice, part of the FA’s women’s football strategy, ‘The Gameplan for Growth’.
As part of the scheme, each apprentice from the colleges selected will be tasked with engaging 100 new female participants and 10 new female leaders, with tailored inclusion and diversity targets.
Since 2017, Hartpury has encouraged over 300 young females take their first, regular steps into football and worked with 10 primary schools within the local area, through the apprentice scheme.
Jenny Arroud, Sports Development and Physical Activity Co-ordinator at Hartpury College, said: “Following the launch of our Women’s Football Academy in 2016, the FA Women’s Football Apprentice has been a fantastic fit to help grow young girls’ participation and aspirations within football.
“It’s exciting to be part of a national programme, not just for us as an organisation but for the apprentice.
“This year’s apprentice, for which we will be inviting applications in mid-March, will have the chance to visit St George’s Park – the FA’s national football centre – on a number of occasions as part of the programme and will have access to some amazing personal development opportunities delivered by prestige industry professionals.
Jenny added: “Being a host college demonstrates the culture that we instil within our students here at Hartpury.
“It is great recognition for the longstanding work that Hartpury has committed to growing football participation amongst a range of student athletes within football since the football academy programme started at Hartpury in 2002.
“We’ve built some really strong partnerships with local schools and regularly deliver football sessions within schools.
“The fact that a number of the sessions that are delivered within local primary schools are delivered by our students on a voluntary basis speaks for itself.
“I’m really proud that external organisations see value in the efforts that we’re making to ensure that our students are at the heart of football at Hartpury.”
Any schools or clubs wishing to work with Hartpury to develop their football offer for young females should contact current apprentice Semwezi Mutalindwa on firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information about the FA Women’s Football Apprentice scheme, email Jenny Arroud, Sports Development and Physical Activity Co-ordinator at Hartpury, on email@example.com
Picture: Semwezi Mutalindwa, Hartpury's current Football Association’s Women’s Football Apprentice