A FOURTH northern suburbs junior football club will kick off an inclusive program for children with special needs next season.
Kingsway Junior Football Club will introduce the Starkick program in May to run alongside its Auskick program.
President Clint Miller said Madeley resident Lauren Bridges contacted the club in December to ask if it could introduce the program for her son Lachlan Hyatt (4) who had autism.
Mr Miller said the club then applied to the WA Football Commission (WAFC) and received approval in late January.
“As there was a void in the area for a Starkick program, Kingsway JFC in conjunction with the WAFC and with great help from Lauren Bridges are happy to announce this great initiative for season 2020,” he said.
“It’s designed as a fun, inclusive program so every kid can play football.”
After learning about Starkick through friends’ involvement with another northern suburbs club, Miss Bridges said she approached Kingsway JFC because she saw a need for sports programs catering for children with special needs, including autism, in the area.
“I’m really pleased it’s all happening,” she said.
“There’s a huge lack of services for kids with special needs.”
Miss Bridges said Lachlan, who will turn five in May, was non-verbal so it was important to put him in an inclusive program where he could have fun and make friends.
“It’s all about being out there and having fun, getting them off the couch and motivated,” she said.
“If I was to put him in a mainstream environment, he would not survive.”
Miss Bridges said the program would also give her younger son Isaac (3) an opportunity to play football when he was old enough to join Starkick in 2022.
She said Lachlan would also be old enough to join the Kingsway Woodvale Junior Cricket Club’s inclusive junior program next summer, so he would be able to take part in sport all year round.
“We’ve got two little boys who love to run around and kick balls and throw balls,” she said.
Kingsway’s all abilities Starkick football program will run on Sunday mornings from May 3 to August 30 at Warradale Reserve in Landsdale.
For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Joondalup Kinross, Quinns Districts and Sorrento Duncraig junior football clubs also offer the Starkick program.
Visit www.wafootball.com.au for more information.
Youngsters get a kick out of pre-season footy program
The Kingsway club has also introduced an eight-week pre-season program for children in Years 3 to 7, which will run on Monday afternoons from February 10 to March 30 at Warradale Reserve.
Mr Miller said Jamie Wynne would coach the pre-season program to support young aspiring AFL footballers.
“This program will assist at getting junior players ready for the 2020 season,” he said.
The club has more than 600 playing members from Pre-primary to Year 12.