Kick It Out works jointly with the Premier League to deliver Equality and Inclusion training for clubs’ academy players, staff and parents.
These workshops aim to raise awareness on current issues including discrimination, underrepresentation and stereotypes within the game.
Each workshop is delivered by Kick It Out and consists of discussing topics such as racism, homophobia, sexism, faith, disability, social media and the impact of acceptable/unacceptable banter in a changing room environment. All workshops are interactive and are led by the participants’ engagement.
The parents’ workshops are based on the support and advice they give to their young son on their journeys, as well as the impact of negative behaviour and the effect it can have on performance.
Equality Inspires Award
In August 2016, Kick It Out and Premier League announced the launch of the Equality Inspires Award, which is presented to Premier League clubs who successfully complete the required number workshops with their Academy sides throughout the relevant age categories, as well as with parents and club staff.
Clubs have a two-year timeframe to complete these workshops and gain the award, whilst any club that undertook workshops throughout the 2015/16 season are able to include these as eligibility toward gaining the Equality Inspires Award.
On Monday 1 May, Watford were the first club presented with an Equality Inspires award in appreciation of their outstanding work as part of the Equality Inspires programme.
The award was presented by former Hornet and Equality Inspires tutor Marcus Gayle before their Premier League clash with Liverpool at Vicarage Road, to recognise the Academy’s impressive record in embracing and arranging equality and diversity training for all its players as well as staff and players’ parents and guardians.
Troy Townsend, Education Manager at Kick It Out, said: “The club has embraced the concept of Equality Inspires and over the last two seasons, by ensuring that those connected to their Academy structure have received the appropriate training to support their understanding of equality, diversity and inclusion within their working environment.”
Read more here.
Liverpool FC were presented with a trophy on Monday 15 May in recognition for their continuing excellence as part of the Equality Inspires Academy programme.
On behalf of Kick It Out, football’s equality and inclusion organisation, Troy Townsend and Marcus Gayle visited the club to acknowledge their commitment to equality and diversity training and to deliver the final sessions of the season.
On receiving the award, Liverpool’s Academy Director Alex Inglethorpe said: “Kick It Out have really challenged our thinking with the workshops that they have hosted throughout the season and it is a real privilege for the Club to work alongside them on such a regular basis.
“It is a great honour for Kick It Out to present Liverpool Football Club with this award and I am looking forward to continuing our fantastic partnership with Kick It Out for years to come.”
Read more here.
Academy Awareness Weekend - 2016/17
Kick It Out, in partnership with the Premier League, hosted the second Academy Awareness Weekend from 21-23 October, raising awareness of the #EqualityInspires education programme that is delivered into top-flight Academies.
Over the course of the weekend, more than 60 games were played in Premier League Academies across the country in recognition of the importance of equality and inclusion in football.
Players and officials from clubs including Hull City, Tottenham Hotspur, Swansea City, West Bromwich Albion and West Ham among others, wore Kick It Out merchandise such as t-shirts and stickers to show their support for #EqualityInspires.
The weekend saw Kick It Out and the Premier League celebrate the delivery of over 80 educational workshops around discrimination to players from Under-11s to Under-23s, as well as academy staff and parents or carers of the players, since the launch of the initiative in August 2015.
You can see our ‘Twitter Moment’ of the event and read a full report here.
The aim of the player workshops is to create a positive environment for players, both on and off the pitch, which is free from discrimination and exclusion, assisting them with their own personal development.
The workshops cover the protected equality characteristics, as well as focusing on the dangers of engaging in discrimination on social media. ‘Banter’ is a key aspect and the players learn how it can also have a negative impact.
On Tuesday 17 May, Equality Inspires delivered its penultimate workshops for the 2015/16 season during an afternoon spent at The Harefield Academy, home of Watford Football Club’s Academy. In the first of two pieces, Kick It Out spoke to Troy Townsend, the organisation’s Education and Development Manager, as well as other tutors and Chris Thurston, the Hornets’ Head of Education and Welfare, about the success of the initiative in educating academy players.
You can read a full report of those workshops here.
The parent workshops focus on the importance of the appropriate guidance of an Academy player, helping them understand and appreciate the value of support in a positive way and also the impact of negative words and actions.
On Tuesday 17 May, Equality Inspires delivered its penultimate workshops for the 2015/16 season during an afternoon spent at The Harefield Academy, home of Watford Football Club’s Academy. In the second of two pieces, Kick It Out spoke to parents, as well as Troy Townsend, the organisation’s Education and Development Manager and Chris Thurston, the Hornets’ Head of Education and Welfare.
You can read a full report about the parent/carer workshops here.
Academy Awareness Weekend at Watford FC – Highlights (October 2016)
Academy Awareness Weekend – Highlights (October 2015)
Equality Inspires – Troy Townsend (May 2016)
Equality Inspires – Marcus Gayle (May 2016)
Equality training delivered – 2017/18
Everton – Under-12s to Under-14s
Liverpool – Under-18s/Under-23s
QPR – Under-23s
Chelsea – Under-11s/Under-12s
Chelsea – Under-13s/Under-14s
Chelsea – Under-15s/Under-16s/Under-18s/Under-23s
Equality training delivered – Previous Seasons
Click here to see records of the equality training delivered in the 2016/17 season.
Click here to see records of the equality training delivered in the 2015/16 season.
Academy Awareness Weekend – 2015/16
Kick It Out and the Premier League’s inaugural Academy awareness weekend proved a success with Academy players, coaches and parents being made aware of the issues around discrimination and the promotion of inclusion. The weekend marked the launch of the joint education initiative for the players, their families and coaching staff.
Read the full report of the inaugural Premier League Academy Awareness weekend here.