Soccer School – A parents view

Our son Dan has attended the soccer schools run by Chesterfield community trust since he was five years old. This has been during most holidays, for at least one or two days, and sometimes for a whole week in the summer as there is a great discount if he attends a whole week. The community trust soccer camps have been a really great way to develop his confidence and skills in football, as well as his general confidence in meeting other children and grown ups.

We like the camps as they are really inclusive, and welcome all abilities, as it’s not about developing academy players, but letting children enjoy football at a fun level. There are elements of skill based football, fun based football related games, and also cooperative and competitive team activities. Dan likes it as they generally finish the day with mini tournaments of mixed age and ability players, which has helped him develop his ability to be a team player and show empathy to those in his team. For Dan, the CFC soccer camps have been so much more than learning to play football; but of course football has been what has motivated him to go in the first place.

We are very proud that Dan is now training with the CFC Emerging Talent Centre for football, alongside his grass roots, and is having a great time developing the skills and love of the game, that were borne, in the soccer camps, from an early age. Through being selected for the etc, Dan has had the opportunity to play academy teams from Premiership teams such as Manchester United, and is played in a tournament at Stamford Bridge last weekend!

For Dan, the CFC soccer camps fostered his love of sport generally, and his agility, balance and coordination were supported. The soccer camps have regular offers for attendees, such as free entry to matches. Attendees can also be lucky enough to be asked to be flag bearers and ball boys on behalf of the CFC community trust, from time to time. First team members visit the training camps to join in and answer children’s football related questions. Dan particularly liked meeting his heroes from the pitch, and their stories of how their talent was identified helped him to realise that ordinary people can get to do extraordinary things!

Soccer camp attendees also get the opportunity to go on tours of the club. Chester the field mouse is generally around to make friends with them. This half term, the community trust have hosted additional camps in localities around Derbyshire which made the camps accessible if you don’t live in Chesterfield.

It was through the CFC Soccer camps that Dan became a member of the Young Spireites, which gives lots of perks, such as two free coffees in Chester’s Den, a free soccer school training day, a free play at Chester’s Den, and also Spireites dance and skills sessions. Parents can also access a free hydrotherapy session with one of the vouchers….. Well worth the ten pounds annual membership. As a Spireites member Dan has also attended exclusive Young Spireite events such as the annual Christmas Party with the CFC team and question and answer sessions, which were both really inspiring for him.

The times of the camps are really convenient for working families, as they start at nine am and finish at four pm……. If the staff can get the kids off the pitch by four that is! If your child likes being outside, and active, or if you would like them to move more, Dan and myself would really recommend they try them. The staff members are really supportive of all children, and Dan has found their kind approach really positive. Dan is a very quiet boy but I always know he’s had a great time at camp as he gets in the car at the end of the day and says ‘that was fun!’. As parents, we couldn’t ask for more, and if Dan continues to play at grassroots ..or goes further….. We will always look back on the CFC Soccer School as a positive part of his footballing journey!