Dinnington Wildcats

Wildcats Clubs: A Roaring Success

Midway through the SSE Wildcats pilot we celebrate the early successes of the brand new FA initiative which aims to introduce young girls into...

Launched across Sheffield & Hallamshire in April 2017, five Wildcats Clubs run weekly sessions for girls aged 5-11 years old.  A total of 150 girls have come through the gates and doors of our clubs to develop their skills, make new friends, and have fun playing sport. 

We recently met with Liam Kay, a PE teacher from Dinnington High School, who runs the Dinnington Wildcats Club along with a number of female young leaders from the school.  The school has previously run a number of leadership initiatives but it became quite apparent that the number of girls getting involved in programmes was low.  Liam wanted to address this issue and believed the Wildcats Club was a great opportunity to engage girls who demonstrate basic leadership skills but may have needed a little more encouragement and self-belief. 

The school developed a curriculum leadership programme so the students could get more experience and gain more confidence.  The school partnered it with the Girls’ Football Youth Sport Award scheme to increase the number of girls taking on leadership roles and having ownership for lunchtime and after school clubs.

Following the Wildcats training day Liam recruited 30 girls from the Youth Sport Award scheme and offered them a six week leadership block to develop team-building, communication and sports-leaders skills.  All leaders are now involved in the delivery of the weekly Wildcats sessions. 

“The programme has had lots of positive outcomes for the young leaders.  Their attitudes and behaviours across the school have changed in a good way.  We, as teachers, often comment about how good their performance has been.  For some, the award scheme and the leadership programme has given them confidence to explore becoming a football coach and working towards related qualifications. A number of others have aspirations to become teachers and PE teachers, the opportunity to play the teacher role with the young Wildcats has given them confidence to pursue this path”, stated Liam. 

Sarah Wood, Football Development Manager at SHCFA also added “It’s great to hear Liam’s story and how he has achieved so many different outcomes.  The Dinnington Wildcats Clubs has been one of our biggest successes.  The number of young girls engaged in the programme is excellent, and to see future coaches in the making is an added bonus.  Liam and his staff have done a fantastic job”.

All of our Wildcats Clubs welcome new players throughout the year.  For more information about the Clubs please click here or contact Sarah Wood on 0114 261 5504. 

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