• Foundation selected by Special Olympics for its expertise in disability sports
• Unique two-stage disability project will help to drive sporting opportunities in India
• Phase one: Foundation staff will train 200 local football coaches across four Indian states working with 600 athletes with intellectual disabilities
• Phase two: 2,000 additional coaches will be trained to deliver sporting opportunities for 30,000 athletes with intellectual disabilities across 24 states in India
Tottenham Hotspur Foundation has become the first Premier League Foundation to be selected by Special Olympics to deliver a unique international disability project that will see 30,000 people with intellectual disabilities across India gain access to sporting initiatives.
Renowned for its expertise in delivering high quality sports programmes for athletes with disabilities, Tottenham Hotspur Foundation will work with Special Olympics Bharat (SO Bharat) to roll out a two-phase project that will provide top-level football training to locally trained coaches.
Initial stages of the project will see Tottenham Hotspur staff train 200 coaches across four Indian states, working with over 600 athletes with intellectual disabilities. Phase two will deliver the legacy of the project, where the first 200 coaches trained by Tottenham Hotspur Foundation will help SO Bharat staff to train an additional 2,000 coaches. These coaches are expected to work across all states and union territories in India with 30,000 athletes with intellectual disabilities.
As part of the Club’s Global Ambassador role, Tottenham Hotspur Foundation works in partnership with Special Olympics to support the growth of football for people with intellectual disabilities across the world. This unique project that commences in Goa and Gujarat later this month is being supported by the Premier League.
The coaching programme, designed by Tottenham Hotspur Foundation and based on the expertise and vast experience of its staff, will consist of a three day workshop combining Football coaching and strategy development training sessions. Subjects will range from the ‘role and quality of a coach’, to ‘motivation, goal setting and putting learning in to practice while removing barriers’.
Further community-based activities will enable Foundation coaches to deliver workshops to local Football providers including the Goa Football Development Council and local universities on how to provide football opportunities to blind, partially sighted or deaf people and those with cerebral palsy.
Through this project, SO Bharat will engage more effectively with the All Indian Football Federation and a variety of other Football industry stakeholders, whilst strengthening the project’s link to the English Premier League.
Grant Cornwell, Chief Executive Officer, Tottenham Hotspur Foundation said: “We were invited to India earlier this year to meet with the Directors and staff at Special Olympics Bharat and instantly knew there was a great synergy and passion between both organisations to train local coaches and volunteers in how to provide high quality football coaching sessions on behalf of athletes with intellectual disabilities.
“Taking elements of our existing disability Football FA Centre of Excellence programmes we run in the UK, we have designed a unique resource that can be rolled out on an international level in partnership with Special Olympics. Sport is extremely important to all communities across the world, and we are delighted to be working with Special Olympics Bharat in India to deliver a coaching legacy capable of training over 2,200 coaches who are using their new skills to provide sporting initiatives to 30,000 athletes with intellectual disabilities.”
This is the second time in recent months that the expertise of Tottenham Hotspur Foundation has been called upon on an international level - earlier this year, the Foundation was selected by the Premier League and British Council to work with Brazilian police on community development projects in some of Rio de Janeiro’s toughest favelas in a bid to tackle gang crime in Rio.