G;asgowGlasgow Girls kicked of their club in 2008 with 13s girls from the East End off Glasgow and reached the Scottish Cup final in first season. Now the club has over 200 girls and teams from 7s to seniors and our community coaching classes.

Registered as a charity they are presently Glasgow Life's community club of the year and are also an SFA "Community Quality Mark Club". Two years ago the club opened its own facility within Budhill Park where they took over the running of an unused football pitch and installed changing units supplied by The Scottish Football Partnership. However it’s this year that see their biggest challenge yet. In November 2015 Glasgow Girls FC will head to The Gambia, West Africa to take on the national women’s side, in a match organised by licensed FIFA match agent Martin Myers.

During this week long football tour the Glasgow side will also take on a number of local adult teams and engage in community coaching programmes within the country. The trip is led by Adventure Kicks (football development & tourism organization based in Glasgow) and hosted in partnership with the Gambian Football Federation (GFF). Glasgow girls will take 22 players, 4 coaches and a media officer and will fund the £16,000 trip through a number of fundraising activities and sponsorship initiatives. To this end the club are currently looking for supermarkets to host bag packing, fundraising volunteers and local companies to sponsor kit for the trip to The Gambia. Only with local help can we make this dream opportunity become reality.

The trip will help raise the profile of FIFA’s campaign #liveyourgoals recently launched in The Gambia. FIFA hope to have over 45 million women participating in football by the 2019 womens world cup. Glasgow Girls chair, Jim Strathdee said ‘We think this is the chance of a lifetime for some of our girls who have never been outside Scotland to see a different culture and style of football, it is also an experience they can add to their coaching CV, and will put Glasgow football firmly on the International map’.

The team will be offered the opportunity to sit SFA coaching badge 1.1 prior to the trip and the club would like to thank Gary Hocknull of Glasgow Life making this possible, some of the girls through college, already have attained 1.3. This means that they can participate in a number of community coaching programmes to promote the Scottish style of coaching within grassroots football. This is something the SFA are keen to support as they have a number of projects across Asia and Africa where they are looking to export their world renowned coach education system. Adventure kicks currently assist the SFA with similar coaching partnership initiatives such as the one they have initiated in Mongolia.

This led to a SFA representative travelling to Mongolia, with Adventure Kicks and Honorary Consul to Mongolia in Scotland David Scott, in January to discuss legacy projects such as coach education and club development. It is hoped that similar partnerships can be developed with the GFF and the SFA have been invited along to support the work that Adventure Kicks are initiating in countries like The Gambia. FIFA Licensed Match Agent and head of Football at Adventure Kicks, Martin Myers said ‘We are passionate about developing football by working with local partners from Associations right down to grassroots clubs.

During the trip we will visit our partner training academy, Gilkock Football Academy Brufut Branch, to offer community coaching sessions and we hope to encourage young children from the area to attend. I would like to extend my gratitude to the GFF who have fully supported our initiative and without this we would not have been able to offer this opportunity to Glasgow Girls FC. I’d also like to congratulate Jim on his innovative management of the club and his vision to see value in such tours. We’re actively looking to support the women's game and hope such tours can bring about real change for young aspiring female footballers both home and abroad.

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