U’s reveal aims to partner with every colts and mini league club in Cambridgeshire
Recognising the important role the club plays within grassroots football in Cambridgeshire, Cambridge United have launched the Absolute Sports Travel Partner Club Programme which aims to engage successfully with every Charter Standard club in the county.
Following positive initial work within the local football community in recent seasons, Cambridge United have now increased its commitment towards supporting local grassroots football by formalising a new agreement, which has been supported by tour provider Absolute Sports Travel.
The programme signifies the U’s desire to work in successful partnership with every grassroots football club in Cambridgeshire, and offers clubs the opportunity to engage and utilise the resources available to a professional football club.
The highlights of the agreement include opportunities for Charter Standard clubs to receive monthly coaching resources sent to team managers, an E-Mentor for online coaching queries or advice, opportunities to raise funds for each club through an exciting ticketing initiative and ten annual coaching events.
Whilst Cambridge United’s commitment towards the programme will also be indicated with the appointment of a full-time Partner Club Liaison over the coming weeks, in which all clubs will be able operate as the main point of contact.
In an exclusive launch event last night at the Abbey Stadium, the first crop of grassroots clubs from across the county signed up for the programme and will begin their working partnership with the club effective immediately.
Commenting on this exciting new scheme, Cambridge United Football Development Manager James Cutting said: “Through this initiative the club are aiming to work in partnership with every Charter Standard grassroots club in Cambridgeshire to offer mutual benefits such as exposure, growth and structure.
“As the leading professional football club in the area we have a duty to help develop the game at grassroots level.
“Currently our Youth Development programmes provide a fantastic outlet for children that be may within the top five percent of players in the country and progress through to our gifted and talented programme at the club. However this initiative indicates our ongoing mission to also provide opportunities to continue playing football for those children who are within the 95%, and has a key focus on enjoyment.
“By strengthening our partnership with Cambridgeshire Football Association we are rolling out our partner club offer, to all Charter Standard clubs.”
He continued: “We are confident that this programme will help develop local clubs in a big way and also aid them in engaging with Cambridge United FC.
“The programme has received wonderful backing from Ashley Gowing of Absolute Sports Travel. Ashley has offered long-term support to our Youth Development programme by providing tours for our Regional Development Centre players for over ten years”
Meanwhile Managing Director of Absolute Sports Travel, Ashley Gowing was pleased to have pledged his support towards the exciting programme and added: "We're delighted to be supporting Cambridge United as sponsor of the new Partner Club programme. Having organised tours and training camps for the club for over a decade, together we share the same values in promoting youth development at all levels.
“This is an exciting opportunity for grass roots clubs to really benefit from this new relationship."
The new initiative has also received the backing of Cambridgeshire FA who look forward to working in partnership with the Football Club to continue broadening opportunities for local grassroots football within the county.
Joe Goude, Participation and Facilities Manager at Cambridgeshire FA said: “The Partner Club programme is a fantastic additional benefit for the FA Charter Standard Clubs in Cambridgeshire and compliments the work we are doing at Cambridgeshire FA to provide clubs with support to help them provide the best coaching environment for young players.
“As the programme grows and develops we are sure that Cambridge United and Cambridgeshire FA can provide a first class support package to grassroots clubs in the county, as well as continue to develop local coaches and improve the playing experience for their players.”
If you are interested in signing up your grassroots colts or mini league club for the Partner Club Programme then please contact JamesCutting@Cambridge-United.co.uk.