Club Website members were among the unsung heroes honoured at the eighth Scottish FA Grassroots Awards earlier this month.
Fife’s Glenrothers Strollers FC were named Best Grassroots Community Club, whilst Aberdeen & District Juvenile FA secretary and SYFA president Raymond Kelly was named Best Volunteer in Youth Football.
The winners collected their awards from Scotland legend Kenny Dalglish and national team manager Craig Levein at the annual ceremony which celebrates the efforts of volunteers who give up their time and effort to provide footballing opportunities across Scotland.
Among them were John Buchanan, Fiona Robertson, Tom Kilgour and Brian Gibson of Glenrothes Strollers FC, who collected the Best Grassroots Community Club award on behalf of the club.
The Fife club, whose website is powered by Club Website, has undergone a successful transition in the last two years.
Since January 2009, the club has changed from a disparate group of 15 independent teams who shared the club name but all operated independently to new club with a five year development plan.
In this time the number of children involved at the club has grown from 200 to 450 and, with the support from the Scottish FA East Region and Fife Council, the club has moved to a new home at Over Stenton Park, complete with nine football pitches, eight changing rooms and a car park – all work carried out by club volunteers, of whom there are now more than 50.
Speaking at the awards ceremony, Strollers secretary John Buchanan said the award was “fantastic” for the club.
“It’s great recognition for all the hard work that everybody has put in,” he said. “To see that recognised and acknowledged by the organisers of football in Scotland is fantastic.”
Also recognised on the night was the SFA’s Best Volunteer in Youth Football, Raymond Kelly, who this season celebrated his 25th year as secretary of the Aberdeen & District Juvenile FA.
In his quarter of a century at the helm Raymond has seen the ADJFA, whose website is also powered by Club Website, grow to over 240 teams ranging from Under 9s to Under 19s.
Through his work at the ADJFA, Raymond became involved with youth football on a more national level and is currently in the final year of a three-year stint as president of the Scottish Youth Football Association.
During this time the SYFA has worked with the SFA to develop the National Player Pathway, a new nationwide programme deisgned to enhance the development of young players in Scotland.
Starting this year, the National Player Pathway will see every young footballer in Scotland join the same national programme of youth football, starting with 4-a-side games for six to eight year olds and the size of the game growing with the children.
“It’s been exciting, rewarding and quite hard work to be involved in that process,” said Raymond after receiving his award.
“I’d like to think we now have a very streamlined, professional organisation running youth football in this country. The award is recognition not just for myself, but for all those who are involved in the SYFA and Scottish youth football in general.”
The Club Website team would like to offer our congratulations to Raymond and everyone involved at Glenrothes Strollers FC for your awards, which are well deserved. Keep up the good work!
Other Scottish FA Grassroots Award winners
Best Youth Football Club of the Year – Cowie United FC
Best Coach in Youth Football – Robert Bartlett, Cuminestown Youth Active FC
Best Volunteer in Adult Football – David Buchanan, Oban Saints FC
Best Volunteer in Women’s/Girls’ Football – Laura Montgomery, Glasgow City FC
Best Volunteer in Disability Football – Ian Husband, Edinburgh Deaf Football Club & Scottish Deaf national team
Best Volunteer in Schools Football – Robert Wilson, Edinburgh Schools
McDonald’s Community Champion Award – Stuart Wild, Renfrew Vics FC
Merit Award for Services to Football – John Beaton, Inverness
With thanks to the Scottish FA for the use of images.