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Women's Football News
Chelmsford's Essex County FA Office has welcomed two pre-Christmas staff additions in the shape of new Thurrock GetIntoFootball Officer Faye Lambert and Carla Dickinson, who fronts up female football in Outer Essex until March.
Faye was selected from amongst a large number of quality applications as Essex County FA Development Manager Brendan Walshe joined Thurrock Council and the Thurrock Association Sunday League looked for an enthusiastic individual to "make a difference" to participation levels in the area. Her role will be divided between the Council and County FA Offices, linking into the 'Growth & Retention' section of The Football Association's 2008-12 Strategy.
Growing the game at the 16+ age group will be crucial for Faye, who will develop programmes to cultivate both 11v11 and small-sided open age football for both genders. Faye will map teams and leagues and develop gaps in provision, providing flexible formats of the sport to meet customer needs whilst supporting programmes with colleges and universities.
Faye is an FA Level Two qualified coach who has also gained Level One Goalkeeping and Youth Award Module One accreditations. Her previous employment was in Thurrock with Youth & Connexions Service who work with 13-19 year olds (up to 25 for young people with a special need) offering support, information, advice and guidance. Outside of work, Faye has a vast knowledge of working with players of 16 years of age and over.
Thurrock was selected to benefit from this new post for various reasons, including the network of clubs situated in the area and strong partnership support from the Council and the League, who are both key partners in supporting the project. The main aim is to encourage more people aged 16 and over to play football then carry that on into adult competition.
"I'm looking forward to getting stuck in and improving football in Thurrock," she said. "I've always wanted to work in football so when this opportunity came up I had to go for it! I didn't start playing until late for Thurrock & Tilbury Ladies, then C & K Basildon. I'm still involved in football with Aveley Youth, managing the Under-8s and working with the Mini Millers Academy which introduces Year One and Reception children to fun, non-competitive football."
Like Faye, Carla supports West Ham United, interspersed with a fondness for Colchester United, and she will operate from the County Office until the end of March to cover a spell of maternity leave. She has recently coached and played in the United States for during an exciting time which coincided with the start of their professional league. Previously, Carla coached at Witham Town, Chelmsford City, Walden Wanderers, West Ham United, White Notley and Braintree Town.
She explained: "My family are football crazy so I had no choice but to love football! I've played for White Notley, West Ham United, Braintree Town and New Providence in the USA and for the Essex Representative team but I'm officially retired now after seven knee operations! My proudest moment was a lap of honour at Upton Park when we won the league in 2001-02.
"It's an exciting time to be involved in girls football, with the Women's Super League starting as well as the FIFA World Cup, the UEFA Cup Final being held at Fulham FC and the FA Cup Final getting a primetime TV slot for the first time ever. It's all happening next year! When I was younger I wasn't aware of any girls football in my area so to be given the opportunity to get as many women and girls loving football is what I'm looking forward to the most."
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