The Cymru Football Foundation (CFF) is kicking off their biggest year of support for football clubs, charitable organisations, and local authorities across Wales thanks to funding from UK Government, Football Association of Wales and the Premier League.
Following their full debut season, the CFF have invested over £9 million to create inspirational, Fit-For-Future Facilities across the country.
Off the back of the investments in 2023:
- 143 pitches have been improved
- Over £3m invested in the 30% most deprived communities in Wales
- Usage of the funded facilities has increased by 77%
- 96% of beneficiaries felt a stronger connection with their local community.
One of the most impactful investments made by the CFF in 2023 was in Ystradgynlais. A grant of £200,000 through the Fit-For-Future Facilities Fund allowed the re-surface of old tennis courts to be converted into a small-sided 3G allowing opportunities for the local junior team and nearby primary schools to take part in physical activity all year round.
Through the Fit-For-Future Equipment Fund, the CFF have supported Saltney Town FC with a grant of just over £11,000. This allowed new security fencing to be installed to reduce anti-social behaviour and vandalism to their facilities.
The Sustainability Fund has been supporting clubs to become more environmentally friendly. Clarbeston Road AFC were keen to find innovative ways to increase their biodiversity value and installed a wildflower meadow alongside upgrades to their internal lighting.
The CFF are preparing to go even further in 2024 following their great start.
The CFF have highlighted a line-up of expert advice and funding opportunities to ensure everyone has access to play the beautiful game – improved experiences and environments to enable participation, growth and retention of players, stronger, sustainable, community-focussed football clubs and doubling the number of women and girls taking part in football.
Whether it be new equipment to help improve a pitch or player’s experiences, new pitches that can be used all year round, or a community facility that will be welcoming to all – the CFF can support the development of outstanding football facilities, resulting in more players and better experiences – helping improve the health and wellbeing of a nation.
Aled Lewis, Head of Facility Investment & Operations at Cymru Football Foundation said: “This year we’re excited to build on the success of our investment in 2023 by providing more and better facilities across the country. Over the next 12 months, we’ll be:
- Delivering more artificial pitches to improve experiences and enable players to access football opportunities all-year round;
- Investing more to tackle inequalities – providing access to better facilities for women and girls, in the most deprived communities and for people with disabilities and from ethnically diverse communities;
- Introducing a Grass Pitch quality assessment and training programme in partnership with the Grounds Management Association;
- Re-opening our Sustainability Fund to support clubs to reduce their energy and water consumption.
Click here to find out more about the Fit-For-Future Facilities Programme Fund – the application window is open until March 2024.