Tuesday 8 March 2016

Sheffield to Run FA WSL Sister Club Programme

Thanks to significant investment by the FA, a brand new initiative has been launched today which aims to drive girls participation up at grassroots level and increase attendances at FA WSL matches.

Sheffield FC is one of 11 clubs who have successfully bid to be a part of the FA WSL Sister Club Programme for the 2016 season, and an announcement early today launched the scheme nationwide.  The aims of the scheme are to encourage FA WSL clubs to engage offer more with local girls' clubs and provide them with support on a number of levels, which in turn is hoped to increase attendances at FA WSL matches.

The Sister Club Programme will see girls’ clubs around the country to become affiliated with their local FA WSL club. As part of the programme, Sister Clubs will gain access to hundreds of match tickets, player appearances, coaching sessions, camps and mascot places. There are two levels of affiliation – gold and silver.

Sheffield FC Ladies' General Manager, Helen Mitchell, explains further: "Research over the last two seasons has identified the main target audience of the FA WSL is girls who play football.  By supporting girls’ clubs with coaching, player appearances, and other support methods, as well as using the WSL as an inspiration source for young female players, hopefully we will see more girls carrying on playing football, and decrease the participation drop off rates amongst older girls."

FA Head of Women’s Leagues and Competitions, Katie Brazier, said: “This programme is a really innovative way to continue building on the league’s success and enable clubs to further grow their fanbases. We know that the success of the league in terms of both attendance and quality is driven by strong grassroots support and this programme will allow clubs to build this even further. We look forward to welcoming all the Sister Clubs and their players at FA WSL games throughout the season.”

To find out more about the Sister Club Programme, or to get your club signed up for one of the limited places, please contact Sheffield FC Ladies' Sister Club Programme Officer Leanne de Silva on 07930 898245, or by email at leanne.desilva@sheffieldfc.com