THE sun was out and some great skills were on show as almost 200 Perth students with special needs competed in an inaugural soccer carnival last week.
Hosted by the Cannington Community Education Support Centre at Coker Park, the inaugural Education Support South Network (ESSN) Soccer Carnival invited students from seven different ESCs to participate in a day full of inclusive soccer fun.
Cannington Community ESC student support co-ordinator Bernardo Dewey said with basketball and athletics carnivals already on the calendar, organisers wanted to give the students another chance to take part in these fun inter-school events.
“It is the first time the Cannington Community ESC is hosting a soccer event but we are very happy to announce that we are going to repeat this event in 2018,” he said.
“We want to integrate students into the soccer through social inclusion and by creating new bonds and friendships and we also wanted to give an opportunity to students with high needs to be involved in a broad range of sport and active recreation in a variety of settings.
“A large part of their enjoyment comes from sharing the experience with teammates, from having the opportunity of being part of an inter school competition.
“By being part of these activities, the students can develop social skills, coordination, confidence and self-esteem.”
Representatives from Football West, Perth Glory, SEDA and the Lynwood Soccer Academy were all on hand to help run the event, while the WA Disabled Sports Association (WADSA) also ran a number of inclusive games for students with higher needs.
In a boon for the hosts, Cannington Community ESC took out the Division 1 competition, while Canning Vale College won Division 2 and Castlereagh won the WADSA Award.
Participating ESC Centres
Cannington Community ESC
Canning Vale College
Leeming SHS ESC