National Equality Award

TORQUAY United Community Sports Trust recently enjoyed one of the most significant milestones in our 27-year history by receiving a National League Trust award for Equality.

The annual scheme from the National League Trust seeks to celebrate exceptional community projects within football organisations that promote diversity and embrace equality.

Each year, the National League Trust presents this award to a special community initiative and this year, Torquay United Community Sports Trust won the award for Best Equality Project, which was presented before Saturday’s game at Plainmoor by Dinah Cox, Chair of the Wembley National Stadium Trust, along with a cheque for £5,000.

The award was given for our work on the Girls United Project, a hugely successful scheme that has significantly increased football opportunities for girls aged between 11 and 19 years. To date, over 100 girls and women have engaged with the project throughout Torbay and South Devon.

It had been identified, through the club’s extensive local knowledge and communication with relevant parties (such as secondary schools and Devon FA), that there was a clear lack of quality football opportunities throughout Torbay and South Devon for young female footballers.

The importance of offering ‘high-quality’ sessions was key to this project, utilising experienced and knowledgeable coaches and female role-models where possible. The importance of the lead coaches in being able to engage with the participants and build a rapport was paramount.

‘Girls United’ has aided Torquay United Community Sports Trust in their wider target of establishing clear pathways for girls and women in football. Their ultimate goal is to provide high-quality provision for all female participants, so that they can begin their football journey at three years of age, and then stay with the club until they are teenagers, when they will potentially have opportunities to train and play for the Torquay United Women’s team, or continue to attend the ‘drop and play’ type community sessions for all abilities.

To find out more about Girls United and our extensive range of programmes for female footballers, please contact admin@torquayunited.com or call 01803 322551.

This project was funded by the Wembley National Stadium Trust, who are an independent grant-maker which funds sports activities. They receive their income from Wembley Stadium based on their total ticket sales and other income.

The National League Trust is a charity that offers grant aid to National League clubs to support their community projects, with funding from the Premier League and the Professional Footballers Association. They each contribute to an annual donation of £1.2m. 

We would like to thank Dinah Cox, Wembley National Stadium Trust and the National League Trust for this award.