Young people

Rotary on the ball at Aston Villa Football Club

Rotary on the ball at Aston Villa Football Club

Every year, scores of special needs youngsters from across the Midlands take part in a football festival. This year’s event, which took place at Aston Villa, was another roaring success.

Now in its 22nd year, 230 pupils took part in the Rotary District Special Needs Football Festival, held at Aston Villa Football Club Academy.

A total of 19 schools entered 34 teams from an area which is centered on Birmingham and the West Midlands, and includes parts of Warwickshire, Worcestershire and Staffordshire.

Sponsorship for this eighth staging of the event was provided by Rotary clubs within the District, and hosted by Rotary Wylde Green, supported by their Inner Wheel club.

Member of Wylde Green Rotary and festival organiser, Nick Thurston, said that the two-day event had been a huge success.

volunteers trophies awards medals football

Volunteers with trophies to be awarded after the games.

He said: “The Rotary Special Needs Football Festival is a firm fixture on our Rotary calendar.

“It has to be hosted over two days because it’s so popular and there’s always a great atmosphere.”

He said that Aston Villa had been hugely helpful with staging the tournament, which was also supported by Tesco, who provided refreshments.

The schools loved the tournament.

Claire Amos from Pitcheroak School in Redditch said: “Thanks for yet another great day.

“Our students had a superb morning and even managed to score a few goals.

“Thanks to all the people who worked so hard to make sure this event was a success. See you next year!”

You can inspire the next generation by getting involved in the programmes Rotary offers young people.