Here at Rotherham United Community Sports Trust we strive to put the Rotherham community at the heart of everything we do. We see it as not only a responsibility of the Football club but a fantastic opportunity for us to give back to the community that has given so much to the Football team. This includes ALL members of our community, especially those who through no fault of their own find it difficult to access resources and physical activity sessions that should be available for all. Our sessions often aim to tackle the social inequalities found within the local areas, including the social inequalities of the disability communities within Rotherham.
The Community Trust offer a number of different sessions that are aimed at getting those participants with disabilities the opportunity to take part. The ‘Ability Counts’ Football sessions on Saturday mornings are inclusive for all age groups, including adults, and incorporate participation Football with competitive Football where the teams for each age group play in local leagues. When promoting these sessions we look at our Sports Participation sessions which run within local SEN and disability specialist schools, these are a great way of engaging he widest range of children with different needs. The goal of our Inclusion team, when engaging SEN and disability groups, is to not only offer single opportunities for the participants but to allow participants to access multiple sessions. For example, students who are participants on our Sports Participation sessions in school may access our Ability Counts Football sessions. However, we also have participants with SEN and disabilities that attend other mainstream sessions such as Football and Boxing. This is just one of the key ways in which we bring people together.
As an organisation we understand how important it is to constantly be looking to develop the work we do. In order to improve the quality of engagement that we have with the Rotherham community, we work closely with other local organisations such as SENSE, who work to support people who are deafblind and may have sensory impairment and complex needs, Deaf Connections, who work with children and families who live with hearing impairments and other local support organisations. With these organisations we hope to improve the lives of the people we work with through positive engagements and sports. Working together we are continually highlighting new opportunities for positive impact. In 2020 we are aiming to double the amount of SEN and disability participants that we currently engage with.