Cardiff and Vale College Football Academy secures prestigious FAW stamp of approval
Cardiff and Vale College’s Football Academy has been given a significant stamp of approval by the association responsible for governing football in Wales.
Awarded the FAW Focus College status for maintaining the highest standards of football provision, CAVC’s Football Academy had to meet strict performance and management criteria to be recognised for its delivery of the sport at the College.
Having been in post for just six months, CAVC Football Academy Director Grant Kalahar has already made a significant impact on the football provision at the College and is delighted with the FAW’s recognition:
“Over the last six months we have worked hard and cohesively with various departments across the College and the University of South Wales to build a comprehensive player development programme for players aged 16-19 outside of Elite Player Performance academies – the youth development scheme initiated by the Premier League. The learners have thrived in the environment that we have provided and have made significant progress in a very short time as a result.”
Recognising the professional approach to football in post-16 education the award provides the College with an opportunity to benchmark itself against a set of quality standards provided by the FAW, and Regional Development Coordinator for the FAW, Jay Probert, was significantly impressed with the College’s provision. He said;
“It gives us great pleasure to award Cardiff and Vale College with FAW Focus College status for the 2015/2016 academic year. The FAW Focus College programme recognises the achievements of colleges throughout Wales who strive for excellence in key areas such as facilities, technical syllabus and community links. These are aligned to the FAW strategic aims highlighting the integral contribution Colleges make to the wider delivery of football provision in Wales.
“On behalf of the Football Association of Wales, may I take this opportunity to congratulate the College on this achievement which I’m sure will only enhance the existing relationship which has been established between the two partners.”
Over the last six to 12 months a number of the academy’s players have gone on to access a higher standard of football outside of the College after significantly improving under its guidance and through utilising links made with football clubs, and two players – Hendrix dos Santos and Carlos Indjai - have represented Wales with the Learning Difficulty National Squad.
Based at the House of Sport next to the Cardiff City Stadium, the CAVC Football Academy currently provides opportunities for learners to play in male, female and disability programmes with future plans set to include three male teams, two female teams and a disability squad.
And it’s not just catering for those who want to utilise the facilities and coaching available on the pitch, the academy also prides itself on providing learners with the opportunities to develop off the pitch, helping to provide experience in other possible careers in the sport, such as logistics, coaching and management and back room support with current students involved in work experience placements with Cardiff City FC.
Grant Kalahar explains:
“The partnership work with the Cardiff City FC Academy has provided the learners with important opportunities to also test out the interpersonal skills required to make contacts and great impressions with people in the football industry, and our partnership with Ely Rangers FC has provided opportunities for our learners to apply performance analysis and coaching skills in the field.
“The learners involved in the CAVC Football Academy are a credit to the College and ultimately it is their application and commitment to what we are about that has enabled us to achieve the FAW Focus College status, and I’m delighted that our provision has received this prestigious recognition.”