Plusport and PSF Recap Successful 2023 Partnership in Support of Football for Kids
Plusport expressed gratitude to the People’s Sport Foundation for its support in the “Football for Kids” project, emphasizing its impact on the development of football for children with disabilities. The People’s Sport Foundation’s commitment was acknowledged as instrumental in advancing this initiative. Through the “Football for Kids” project, PluSport aimed to foster integration, inclusion, and the overall well-being of young participants.
The football activities for children and young people in 2023, in partnership with PSF, included:
1. Regular respectively weekly trainings
More than 10 PluSport sports clubs already offer regular football training sessions for children and young people in almost all regions of Switzerland. The training usually takes place on a weekly basis for 1.30 hours and is led by coaches who have been specifically trained in football and in disability sports. The training sessions are open to everyone, girls and boys, and for all types of disabilities. Through a regular training, the young athletes experience community. Playing sport together with likeminded people is fun and helps to improve their overall condition. Practising this tactical sport not only promotes motor skills, but also contributes enormously to strengthening and consolidating cognition and concentration, for instance the ability to think and remember, and the will to persevere.
2. Football Tournaments
In 2023, PluSport was able to organise 10 outdoor tournaments in various regions of Switzerland. The PluSport football tournaments are very popular, which reflects in the fact that we are increasingly asked by regional football clubs to collaborate on tournaments.
At a total of four tournaments, children and youth teams played their own tournament in a separate youth category. The inaugural event on May 7th in Niederlenz featured four teams, with Ponte Kickers Zofingen emerging as the children/juniors category winners. The tournament circuit continued in Kreuzlingen on June 10th, where 5 teams vied for victory. The Legends Flawil claimed the kids/junior’s tournament title. The absence of a children’s tournament during PluSport Day in Magglingen led to a September 9th tournament in Solothurn, involving 45 children and young people. Special Kickers Lucerne excelled, securing the championship.
The year concluded with an October 21st indoor tournament in Siggenthal, where 35 youngsters showcased their football skills. A special highlight of the tournament was the support of the spectators, parents, siblings and friends who were present in large numbers and cheered the players on loudly. Another highlight was the presentation of the trophies at the end of the tournament. Each child received recognition for their participation and achievements in the form of a small trophy. It was a moving moment as the children celebrated their successes. Ponte Kickers Zofingen claimed the big trophy as the category winner.
Education and Training Course Football
On 25th November, PluSport conducted the training course «Football for all – football with disabilities» in Siggenthal. The course aimed to guide trainers and instructors on effectively adapting and implementing football training units for disabled sports. Participants were encouraged to create and test their adaptations, learning how to plan training structures suitable for their teams. Luigi Ponte led the course, with 23 participants benefiting from this valuable experience. PluSport’s ongoing education courses for football coaches play a crucial role in enhancing weekly training sessions and facilitating the adoption of innovative adapted training lessons.