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ARTIST REWARDS COACHING APPRENTICE

Local artist Peter came in to the Hub this week to surprise Alice Hodgson, one of our coaching apprentices, with a special gift.

Peter’s son James is a regular attendee at our Friday night Pan-Disability Football sessions for over-16s.

Peter felt so moved by the progress that James has made at our sessions, he wanted to give something back, saying: “I know that Michael Jackson is someone who is very special to Alice and has provided inspiration through some tough times for her.

“What’s special to me is the expertise, care and attention the staff give to James, especially Alice, Ashton and Adam. That’s not something you find everywhere. James is about to embark on his Duke of Edinburgh Gold Award and the Trust’s Pan-Disability sessions will play a big part in that.”

Scott Atkinson, head of education & wellbeing at the Community Trust, commented: “When James first started coming to our sessions, he presented a challenge to our staff due to his specific additional needs. We devised a programme of one-to-one coaching using two and three-word commands and photo prompts.

“James now has a drill where he dribbles the ball, passes to a coach, receives the ball back and shoots. We are currently working on introducing turns into James’ repertoire and that’s going really well. I’m honoured that Peter has asked me to be one of James’ assessors for his D of E Gold Award and looking forward to seeing his progression over the next year.”

Peter recently completed a Beatles commission for the Cavern Mecca in Liverpool that will be auctioned off at an event there next week to raise funds for Mencap Liverpool.

For his next project he is turning his attention to the Spireites. “I wanted to give something back to the Trust in recognition for the fantastic work they do in the local community,” he said. “I’m planning to produce an original piece that reflects why the club is special to the fans that blends its heritage and modern history.

“The plan is to auction this off towards the end of the season to raise funds to support the great work of the Trust and specifically its Pan-Disability Project.”

Peter has also been using his artistic talents to design a team badge for our Pan-Disability group. “Later this year we are planning to launch Chesterfield FC’s first-ever Disability Football teams which will give every child and young person with additional needs the opportunity to represent the club in matches against other clubs,” said Scott.

Part of the money raised will go towards providing playing and training kit for our participants so they can represent the club with pride.”

For more information about our Pan-Disability Football sessions and holiday clubs, please contact Scott Atkinson at scottatkinson@spireitestrust.org.uk