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Women's Specialist Hubs Confirmed 24/10/2018

Nineteen universities have been successful in becoming BUCS Women’s Football and Futsal Specialist Hubs in partnership with BUCS and The FA.

Through the University Grassroots Hubs programme, 70 universities have received £400,500 to support the development of football and futsal. The hugely successful programme in 2017/18 saw 84,770 unique participants engaged in both internal student and external community football or futsal, facilitated by 2,548 workforce members.

We have identified 19 of these universities who have a passion and commitment to developing women and girl’s football, and want to enhance their offer through innovative programmes and working with both internal and external partners.

Universities will get access to additional support in the delivery and development of their women’s offer, through both individual and networking meetings. They will be at the forefront of our new initiatives and offers, getting first access to pilot projects and innovation sessions to support in the development of the game, as well as the opportunity to apply for an innovation fund. We will also be driving our work with our partners (Education, WSL, FA) through the specialist hubs, which will offer opportunities to engage with new external networks.

Specialist hubs will have the opportunity to apply for innovation funding to deliver a new women’s football or futsal programme at their institution. We will be looking for applications that demonstrate innovative new approaches to supporting the female game, working with and through local partners and targeting a diverse demographic of participants.

Donna McIvor, National Participation Manager at The FA commented: “Congratulations to the Universities selected as Women’s Football Specialist Hubs. The FA is committed to doubling participation and making football the number one sport of choice for girls and women; Hubs play an important role in achieving this ambition. Hubs play a significant role in providing opportunities for women and girls to participate in the game as players, leaders, coaches, officials and fans both in the university itself and in their local communities. I am excited to work closing with the Specialist Hubs and BUCS over the forthcoming months to make a meaningful difference to women’s and girls’ football.”

The successful universities who will form the network are as follows:

Southampton Solent University

University of Hull

University of Manchester

Sheffield Hallam University

University of Birmingham

University of Gloucestershire

Durham University

Northumbria University

Queen Mary, University of London

University of Surrey

University of Hertfordshire

University of Essex

University of Wolverhampton

University of Worcester

University of Huddersfield

Newcastle University

University of East Anglia

University of Exeter

University of Brighton

Over the next nine months BUCS will be working closely with the 19 universities with the aim of sharing key challenges and successes with the wider network, to support other universities who may be looking to target female engagement in football or futsal.

For further information please contact Nicki Russell, BUCS Women and Girls Football Development Officer.

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