Footballing Falkirk student's bunch of Bog Bairns doing it for the love of the game
A football daft former Falkirk FC player is combining her sporting experience and Forth Valley College (FVC) childcare studies to help less fortunate youngsters maintain their love for the beautiful game.
Chloe Ward (21) has been spent the last five years building up the Bog Bairns FC and now trains and coaches over 50 registered youngsters spread out over five mixed age groups from aged four to 12 on the pitches at Westfield Park Community Centre.
As Chloe works towards the completion of her NPA this summer, she is now looking to apply for a working with communities course at FVC, to help enhance her admirable achievements in the Bog area of Falkirk
Chloe, mum to Lucas (2), is someone who still plays the game herself with Dunipace Women FC, and has even bigger plans for Bog Bairns as she hopes to
link up with FVC’s sports department to encourage coaching students to carry out work experience with her developing club.
Her main concern at the moment, however, is making sure her young players have the basic equipment they need to be able to take part in training and games.
Chloe said: “At the moment I am searching Facebook and the internet for people kindly giving away football boots which I can give to some of my wee players.”
The student’s efforts to help her local community were inspired by her own childhood.
“It was a struggle when we were young and I wasn’t really that good at school. I was told by teachers that I would achieve nothing, but I was determined to prove them wrong and determined to help youngsters who could not afford to play the game.
"I feel lucky my family made sure I could go to football training and I have been determined to help others in the same situation.”
While she was at Falkirk FC, Chloe managed to work through her 1.1 Early Touches SFA course and is now working her way through subsequent coaching badges.
She has also attained all the requirements for working with children – her PVG certificate and First Aid qualifications – in accordance with Scottish Youth Football
Thanks to National Lottery funding, she was able to design a logo for the team, as well as purchase strips and basic equipment.
Now, as well as operating throughout the full season with training and games, Bog Bairns offer summer football camps for youngsters.
Chloe said: “I really enjoy it and get loads of things out of coaching the youngsters with a committed group of fellow parents. We have tried to keep the fees for parents
as low as possible.
“We may not have the millions of the giants of world football, but Bog Bairns are rich with passion and a desire to help under privileged kids fall in love with the game.”
Gemma Dempsey, an early education and childcare lecturer at FVC, said: “I’m exceedingly proud of Chloe. She very successfully manages family life, college and
the ever expanding Bog Bairns.
“She’s an inspiration, not only to her college peers, but to her local community where I know she is thought extremely highly of.”
People can e-mail Chloe at [email protected] if they can help with things like training equipment, kit or funding to help Bog Bairns continue to operate.