Over 30 children were given opportunities to enjoy football experiences through Walsall FC Community Programme’s ‘Swifty’s Pen and Play’ writing competition.
Years 3, 4, 5 and 6 children at Delves Junior School wrote and designed a football CV detailing why they deserved to win the prizes.
The initiative, funded by local firm Protec Direct, saw all winning entries receive a free place on Walsall FCCP’s half-term soccer schools, with the 16 best offered a match visit experience at Walsall v Burton.
Assistant Inclusion Officer, Jamie Shelley-Ewan, said: “With the help of Protec Direct, it’s great that we’ve been able to offer these opportunities to the children at Delves.
“It has been great to see them getting involved in football and making friends along the way.”
As well as the football session and ticket to the game, the group were also flag bearers, forming the Guard of Honour for the fixture.
Overall winner Briley Hammond, 10, even got the special chance to meet her favourite Walsall player Nicky Devlin, as well as midfielder Liam Kinsella – a big supporter of Pen and Play.
Briley’s mum Vicky Davis, said: “It’s been brilliant, she’s absolutely loved it!
“It’s been an amazing experience and a really nice opportunity. She was so excited and couldn’t wait to meet the players.
“I’d offered to Briley to come and play football before but she wasn’t interested. I think this programme has built up her confidence, speaking to and working with new people.”
Lauren Foulds, Product Manager at Protec Direct, said: “Working with WFCCP has been a fantastic experience and we are happy to be supporting our local community.
“Encouraging kids to engage in group activities helps break boundaries and promote health. We hope to help inspire kids to believe in themselves and reach for the stars, whether it be in football, or anything else they may be passionate about.”