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NWFA hosts Walking Football sessions for people with Autism and Learning Difficulties

Inspired by the growth of participants and watching friendships flourish in their over 70’s group, the NWFA has decided to run sessions for group members at Skills for People.

Based in Newcastle, Skills for People is a charity that supports people with disabilities, autism, and learning difficulties – as well as their families – by offering advice and opportunities to socialise.

The emphasis on community building by Skills for People is why the NWFA decided to offer free walking football sessions.

The sessions are a great way to get people outside, be active, build friendships, learn new skills, and most importantly have fun,” enthuses NWFA coach, Steve Sanderson.

Who has witnessed first-hand how shy and non-verbal participants became more confident as the sessions went on – especially after scoring a goal.

Sanderson has run three sessions so far, alongside fellow coach Steven Hill.

The NWFA takes the players to and from every session and provides lunch so players can chat about the game and continue socialising.

“Walking football has been fantastic so far and we are hearing brilliant feedback from the people who have been coming along,” explains Wellbeing Worker at Skills for People, Erin Schuler.

With the help of funding from the Charities Buying Group, the NWFA hopes to continue sessions and has arranged for participants to visit Newcastle United’s pitch at St James’ Park.

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