A leading national football organisation based in South Shields is supporting the grassroots football community through delivering a wide range of campaigns and events including working with the Football Association.
Team Grassroots is the only independent voice for grassroots football and provides a platform where coaches, parents and anyone involved in non-professional or elite football can find guidance and advice.
For more than a decade, the organisation has been working with the FA, Kick it Out, Show Racism the Red Card and other stakeholders in football to deliver regional and national campaigns, with the aim of helping to bring people together, raise awareness of important issues and make football more accessible.
The group will be hosting 16 question and answer events for the FA as part of its top to bottom consultation of grassroots football to find out what clubs would like to see and what challenges different clubs across the country face. The 16 events will take place all around the UK with at least one set to be held in the North East.
Paul Kirton, who has also been a football coach for 15 years said: “Team Grassroots has allowed me to create a brand and voice that I’m hugely passionate about and I can’t believe how much of a positive impact we have had on communities not only in the North East but all around the country.
“We are keen to stick to our South Shields roots and as well as working on a national level we want to bring as much as we can to the North East, whether that be the events we host or delivering regional campaigns.
Kirton, a former police officer set up Team Grassroots after suffering an injury at work which meant he could no longer continue his career in the force.
The team has previously worked closely with the FA on a national safeguarding campaign Play Safe targeting parents and coaches. In the North East they have worked with partners and charities to fund and deliver free football equipment and kits, as well as donating defibrillators and providing CPR training to grassroots clubs.