December 2, 2022
Sensory Football for Young Diamonds
Airdrie Community Trust has been working closely with John Graham and his Airdrieonians Community ASD Group.
John set up the ASD group around seven years ago to allow kids with sensory needs to have a safe and fun place to play the game we all know and love.
Some time ago Airdrie Community Trust contacted John and began dialogue about assisting him to deliver this training for the children.
Following the discussions Airdrie Community Trust are delighted to announce that they will be providing the group with the pitches they require to carry out their training.
Gordon Watson, Airdrieonians director and Community Trust trustee, said: “We are delighted to finally announce this partnership.
“When we contacted John and his group he was delighted to enter into conversation and those conversations have led to this fantastic conclusion.
“We are happy to cover the pitch hire costs for the group and have already been doing this for some time. It is vital that children in the community get the opportunity to play this wonderful game safely and in an environment that makes them feel at ease and comfortable.”
John Graham was delighted at the outcome: “I can’t thank the Airdrie Community Trust enough as this gesture assists in making the running of the group far easier and also in a top quality football environment.
“The provision of the pitches has allowed us to reach more children and make sure as many children in the community can benefit from the group as possible.
The parents of our budding footballers are also delighted, and we have received many comments of support such as those below.
“The ASD session provided by John has been invaluable to us and our son. This session hasn’t only been great for getting my son out to play his favourite game but it has also helped with his social skills, confidence and building relationships which is all something that having ASD he struggles with.
“It’s not just a kick about on a Tuesday night, for us it has many more benefits
“In Cameron's words…'It's the only place I can go to play and learn football and be with others who accept me for who I am because we're all alike’. From a parental view, it's a beneficial group for all those who attend.
“The coaches are accepting of all the young people and have an understanding of their challenges and work on enhancing the skills of all which is great for both the kids and the parents. We would like to see the group continue and develop further.
“He's really developed playing football and being part of a team since joining the group and now plays every Saturday with a local amateur team. It wouldn't have been possible without joining this group.”
Check out our social media posts for some great photos from recent sessions!