AS a Fremantle Dockers supporter and fan of Nat Fyfe, Lachlan Hodgson was destined to wear the number 7 jumper.
The 13-year-old is part of the Marist Junior Football Club’s recently launched Footy Champs program for children with special needs.
Lachlan said he enjoyed being part of the club.
“I like kicking goals and tackling, and taking a hanger,” he said.
The program currently has 10 Newman College students involved but club president John Penniment said he was keen to expand next year and would welcome students from other schools.
“It is the first of its kind in the Claremont district,” Penniment said.
“They are able to run around without their parents standing right behind them.
“It gives parents the opportunity to watch without having to be involved.”
Penniment said the players, who were from different year groups, embraced the camaraderie of being part of a football club.
“It’s important to enjoy footy, to enjoy the game,” he said.
“It’s so much fun for everyone and you can see their skill level improving all the time.”
Year 9 students from the Marist Junior Football Club help Penniment with coaching the Footy Champs players.
Footy Champs is a WA football Commission initiative.
The club will receive a $1000 Holden Home Ground Advantage grant this month to buy gazebos for spectators and players.