Albion players encourage budding footballers at summer holiday session in Haywards Heath

Football coaching at St Joseph's Primary

Football coaching at St Joseph's Primary

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Children in Haywards Heath attending one of Albion in the Community (AITC) summer football courses, supported by American Express,® received a surprise visit from Brighton & Hove Albion first team players over the school holidays.

Girls and boys of all abilities, aged 6-14, were attending AITC’s football session at St Joseph’s Primary School. First team defenders Lewis Dunk and Adam Chicksen answered questions, assisted AITC coaches and Amex volunteers with teamwork drills and awarded certificates at the end of the session.

This summer, over 900 children have participated in AITC football courses – more than half of these sessions were supported by Amex employees, who volunteered more than 100 hours to help deliver the programme.

Stuart Christie, Head of Community Sport at AITC said: “It’s encouraging to see the enthusiasm and the potential of so many local kids attending the sessions over the summer. The support of the Albion players, who took time out to provide insights into their training and share their personal journey into professional football, provided encouragement and inspiration to children looking to follow in their footsteps.”

Ivan Mainprize, Vice President at American Express said: “This is one of several AITC initiatives across the Sussex community supported by our employees. Through programmes like this, children not only improve their football skills, but also learn the importance of team working, co-operation and all round good sportsmanship.”

Earlier this summer saw the opening of the American Express Elite Football Performance centre in Lancing. The new training ground and academy facility signals a significant investment in nurturing local talent in the short term and for generations to come.

For more information about future football and sporting courses across Sussex visit www.albioninthecommunity.org.uk