UEFA award for ‘amazing community-focused’ Greenisland Football Club
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It has received a UEFA Grassroots Club of the Year bronze award.
During the pandemic, Greenisland FC has delivered food packages to community groups and medication from pharmacies to those in need.
The club has been posting online skills competitions and organising football fun packs for children too.
In a statement, Greenisland FC said: “We are honoured to receive this award as recognition for the work we do on and off the pitch.”
Independent Councillor Bobby Hadden, who is a founder member and club trustee, said: “I am absolutely delighted at the award for the club. It is recognition of the hard work that goes into the community.”
There was praise too from the Irish Football Association. In a statement on the IFA website, Michael Boyd, director of football development, said he was delighted the UEFA executive committee has recognised Greenisland FC in the 2020 awards.
Mr Boyd said: “More than 50 countries nominated their best volunteers and community clubs. These are very prestigious awards.”
He went on to describe Greenisland as “an amazing community-focused inclusive club” which has served the area “with distinction”.
Greenisland’s clubhouse and 3G pitch, which was opened last year with support from Mid and East Antrim Borough Council and Sport NI, act as a community hub.
The club that helped nurture the talents of Northern Ireland internationals Jonny and Corry Evans, Craig Cathcart and Michael Smith has around 400 players and 100 volunteers, providing opportunities from the age of five upwards.
The Deputy Mayor of Mid and East Antrim, Councillor Andrew Wilson, added his congratulations.
The UUP representative said: “The bronze award is richly deserved UEFA recognition for such a well run, local club. They continue to go from strength to strength, both on and off the pitch. Well done everyone at Greenisland FC.”
As well as a special certificate, the club will be presented with 100 footballs to support its activities.
The awards are presented annually in recognition of exceptional work in grassroots football.
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