Tuesday, 10 September 2013

CAN U KICK IT? Moss Side Youth Football Initiative

Can U Kick It? has been set up to offer free football training to children and young people in Moss Side and Hulme, between the ages of 6 - 16. They meet every Wednesday at 6 PM at Moss Side Leisure Centre

A community football programme started by Moss Side-based Fathers Against Violence (FAV) as a way of providing young men with the ambition and confidence to pursue a life away from gang violence. It was set up by James Gregory, whose son Giuseppe was killed in a mistaken revenge shooting.

Can U Kick It? was launched by FAV, a grass-roots organisation which provides support for fathers in Moss Side and Hulme, training them to become mentors for young people who may not have a male role model at home. FAV was established by local resident James Gregory in 2011 to help families keep their children out of gangs. Mr Gregory felt a strong need to act after his son, Giuseppe, was shot dead in 2009 – the innocent victim of a mistaken revenge attack. 

Can U Kick It? offers free weekly football training to boys ranging from the ages of 6 to 16. The sport-based programme is facilitated by volunteer coaches from the local community who also act as mentors to help build their confidence and broaden their aspirations. Can U Kick It? also offers participants a chance to develop key life skills including team work and social skills.

FAV would be very interested to hear from any local businesses that would be able to support their efforts. Heineken Brewery has already pledged assistance through the Your Square Mile campaign, but they need more help in the form of sponsors or other funding to enable them to continue helping in our neighbourhood. If you know of any businesses that would be able to help out, or would like to know more about it, please pass along this message.

“Gang violence has been a huge issue in Moss Side and Hulme for a long time, and has caused devastation in many families like mine. FAV and Can U Kick It?’s mission is to put to an end to the tragic loss of young lives by inspiring our youth to believe in themselves and have the ambition to pursue a life outside gangs,” said Mr Gregory.

Can U Kick It? is making a difference to the community because having a positive role model and experiencing the camaraderie of a team can change a young person’s perspective on life. We’re hoping that Manchester’s businesses can really see the value in our cause and recognise what their support would mean to the people we help.”

If you would like more information, Mr Gregory can be contacted at fathersagainstviolence@hotmail.co.uk.