Football Victoria provides coaching support through Club Coach Coordinator program

Football Victoria

Through the Club Coach Coordinator (CCC) program, Football Victoria (FV) is committed to working with Clubs to create a positive culture within the state’s football community.

Having been developed by Football Australia to enhance the coaching and playing experience for all involved within a Club, the CCC program represents an immense resource for clubs looking to upskill and ultimately retain coaches to ensure football in Victoria continues to thrive.

The CCC Program promotes retention and development of skills, offering a simple and controlled support network for new or inexperienced coaches. It also offers an opportunity for Club coaches to gain a recognised coaching accreditation within the season and without having to travel to attend an external course.

Under the FV CCC Program, a selected person within a Club works closely with the FV Program Manager to:

  • Build strong sense of inclusion and belonging.
  • Welcome new players, members, and supporters.
  • Maintain good communication between all Club stakeholders and;
  • Create a positive, safe, and non-threatening environment in which players and coaches feel that they can try new things and make mistakes.

The CCC role provides relevant and valued coach support in the Club environment and supports coaches to ensure sessions are safe, inclusive, organised, enjoyable and engaging for all involved.

Clubs can support their coaches through a variety of packages ranging from a Basic package which primarily involves online support, through the Bronze & Silver packages which offer regular online catch-ups. Gold packages are also available, which provide a higher level of in-person support including Club visits, Community Coaching Certificates and a planned Coaching Conference.

There are already nearly 60 Clubs active within the program in 2022, with a strictly limited amount of packages Bronze, Silver and Gold packages left.

Those looking to register their interest can do so here.

Football West launches innovative Arabian Engagement Strategy

Western Australia grants

Football West have confirmed its Arabian Engagement Strategy in partnership with the Council for Australian-Arab Relations and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT).

Simply, it seeks to enhance Australia’s bilateral ties with Arab countries through a shared passion for the world game.

In what is truly a first of its kind in Australian football, Football West and the Federal Government are using this Arabian Engagement Strategy to grow international engagement between Australia and Arab countries specifically through the delivery of training, education, school programs, tours, competitions and the development of players, coaches, and referees.

DFAT has confirmed a $50,000 grant from the Council for Australia-Arab Relations with the total project value listed at $297,786.

Football West CEO Jamie Harnwell spoke about the potential of growing WA football through this innovative collaboration said via press release: 

“The incredible growth of football in the Arab region is well documented and Football West is excited to be involved.” he said in a Football West statement,” he said. 

“We saw Qatar host the FIFA World Cup 18 months ago, while Saudi Arabia will host the tournament in 2034 and has currently attracted some of the biggest names in world football including Cristiano Ronaldo. And the UAE has the current AFC Champions League winners in Al Ain FC.

“Below the headline acts there is massive potential at grassroots levels in the three countries through sporting and cultural exchange visits.

“The primary objective is to position football in Western Australia as a prominent player within the three countries and offer West Australians unique opportunities in sports, culture and education.

“This includes joint development, training and technical programs; coaches and referee workshops; and matches between WA State teams and sides from Qatar, UAE and Saudi.

“The Arabian Engagement Strategy will further promote Football West and the Sam Kerr Football Centre as hubs for team base camps, professional training and exchange programs.

“We have seen the value of the Sam Kerr Football Centre with the recent visit of the Socceroos, and last year with the Matildas. Perth can deliver and that is being seen around the world.”

It is an interesting initiative that is innovative and ambitious as it seeks to reach the Middle East through the sport.

With the grant money tied in there is clearly a plan in place to execute it properly and hopefully provide WA teams with better training and development workshops for its players and referees.

FCA CEO Kelly Rourke discusses future ambitions for Australian football coaching

Kelly Rourke

Football Coaches Australia (FCA) CEO Kelly Rourke has certainly had an unorthodox career on her way to taking over this role in December last year, but her wealth of sports administration experience paired with her glaring passion for football promises to help coaches in Australia progress further than ever before.

Off the back of the Matildas World Cup success and after state federation annual reports suggesting a sizeable increase in the number of coaches participating, Australian coaching education and wellbeing has never been more of an integral part of our local game.

In an interview with Soccerscene, Rourke discusses her career journey to the present day, her overall ambition for the future of local coaching in this role and how she will empower female coaches as the game surges in popularity.

About yourself, how was the journey to becoming FCA CEO? What roles have you done and what is your background in football?

My background is in policing believe it or not. Majority of my career to date has been involved in various roles of policing from patrol work to investigations so that’s the big backbone of my career and is what ultimately brought me over to Australia from England. I came out and joined the police here, got recruited whilst I was still in England because they were on the search for specialist skills.

I’ve been involved in sport my entire life. Back in the day when I was a teenager, I played for Bradford City and Huddersfield Town so I’ve been involved in football for as long as I can remember as a player. I eventually got stolen by Rugby League and played for England.

When I got to Australia and left the police, I got into various different jobs including a Management Executive role, one with Tabcorp and ultimately, I ended up becoming an administrator for the NRL which is where I get my sports admin background from.

I’m also a chairwoman for a centre in South Australia called The Marjorie Jackson-Nelson Centre for Women’s Sport which is a government-funded project that will initially go for four years where we are doing a 12-month course for females to try and bridge the gender gap across all sports, all levels and all roles.

It’s not been an obvious career where I’ve worked in sport or football my entire life, but football is by far the first sport that grabbed by attention, and my career background would probably surprise a few people.

Do you have an overall plan or ambition for coaches in Australia as the CEO of FCA?

I think we need to try and offer something like the PFA does, I think a big goal for us this year that we will try to achieve is standardised contracts in the APL and NPL. We need to be securing the futures of our coaches in order to keep the talent in Australia and also to foster coaches from Europe and across the world to come over here, and that only happens with the introduction of standardised coaching contracts across the professional leagues.

That includes formalised grievance procedures, dispute resolution, tribunals. I just think it is long overdue, we really need to be safeguarding the development of our coaches but also their wellbeing. That’s got to be our starting block, we need to secure that and then hopefully we can float it out to the APL and across community football. If we don’t take care of their wellbeing, we are going to lose coaches and without coaches, there is no football.

Working with the A-Leagues and the FA on coach development is one of our most important goals. We’ve got to be driving change forward and offering similar services to the PFA who are a great organisation to learn from.

For the local game, what’s FCA’s role in encouraging a growth in the number of local coaches?

We do a lot of coach education so the FA have moved to the UEFA way of coach development, so it used to be that coaches obtained points in order to retain their licences but now its hours. We’ve been working closely with the FA to understand what it looks like and ensure that we can deliver meaningful coach education to our coaches, and we do that free of charge to our members. We host workshops and webinars with top coaches to help with that.

As a woman in power, are there any moves that you’re making to bridge the gender gap for coaching in Australian football?

I’m not sure when FCA brought me in they had a female in mind, they just wanted fresh eyes and someone enthusiastic, and I do this role because I love it and am passionate about the game, I still play and heavily involved with coaches and community football. They wanted to bring someone who had the knowledge of the game that’s got a lot of sports administration experience behind them which I do have.

The FA have invited me to a Women’s football summit in June and I think that really shows there is progress with the FA for the fact I’ve been invited. Obviously, I want to increase opportunities for our female coaches, we’ve only got two head coaches in the A-Leagues. It was good to see Emily Husband get announced as coach of the year and we’ve got Kat Smith who didn’t have a job until a few weeks out from the season when Western United snapped her up, so we really want to drive and show the female coaches the pathway.

Being a woman does it encourage that? Of course it does for me because I know what it’s like to be an athlete or a coach and not have those opportunities so a big part of my role will involve creating more stabilised roles for our coaches but also creating the pathway for women to nurture the talent we’ve got.

We need to see more female coaches in NPL teams and in the A-Leagues for sure and I think Emily [Husband] winning coach of the year is a great start, I can’t celebrate that enough.

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