We can today confirm that we are one of only five County FAs to be awarded funding to start a new girls' Emerging Talent Centre (ETC), which will see the number of young female players engaged in FA programmes across the county rise by the end of the 2023-24 season.
The funding has come from the Premier League's latest domestic broadcast rights package, which the Government signed off last year under the proviso that an additional £100 million must be invested over the next four years in many key areas across football, including the development of the women's and girls' game.
The new Kent ETC will operate for at least 30 weeks per season and will commence from September 2022. Five key areas will underpin the centre:
• Better accessibility
• More inclusivity
• Reducing the impact of early selection
• More focused investment
• Providing more appropriate challenges
The Kent ETC will be aimed at girls playing in under 14s, under 15s and under 16s, and will provide additional elite coaching with the ambition to signpost players to the FA Player Pathway - Discover My Talent. Players will be able to register their interest shortly for trials in September.
Rebecca Moore, Football Development Officer (Women & Girls) is excited to offer this provision in Kent, saying: "Having an ETC in the county will provide opportunities for talented young girls in Kent, with a local, high-quality training environment to supplement their current football journey. It is an exciting new opportunity for girls in Kent to come together and experience elite-inspired training. The girls will enjoy access to increased playing time through a high-standard games programme across various formats, including futsal, small-sided games and full-format games. Players will have support to grow as individuals and players, which they can apply at their football club or other footballing environments. There are many positives for the girls to get involved with this programme!"
Darryl Haden, Kent FA CEO added: "As a County FA, we are committed to developing football at all levels of the game, and it is vital that girls across the county have more opportunities to progress and develop. It is exciting to be one of the first County FAs to be awarded a license, and we cannot wait to move this forward in September."
For more information regarding our Kent Emerging Talent Centre, please get in touch with Rebecca Moore, Football Development Officer (Women & Girls) at Rebecca.Moore@KentFA.com