Kick It Out’s One Game, One Community weeks of action is currently underway. This season's initiative has been lengthened by a week to include more activities, and will be taking place up until the 31 October.
Remaining one of the most highly visible community and social inclusion campaigns in the world, the period will see grass roots football join the professional game, as well as teams and leagues across the continent, for a united stand against any discrimination taking root within the sport.
Throughout the 18-day period, professional clubs will be making their own contribution by holding matchday events at their dedicated One Game, One Community weeks of action fixture, with a horde of teams already confirming the activity they will be undertaking. At grass roots level, a number of thought leadership seminars, football tournaments and fan and community led activity will take place.
Once again, the campaign will be calling upon the support of its club ambassadors during the weeks of action. This year, they are as diverse as ever, with Newcastle United brothers Shola and Sammy Ameobi, Nottingham Forest midfielder Guy Moussi, Colchester United’s Kemal Izzet and Cheltenham Town ace Kaid Mohamed, all on board. They’ll be donning brand new One Game, One Community t-shirts, helping to deliver the message of inclusion to fans in the stands, and in homes, everywhere.
The weeks of action was officially launched on October 13 at Ford’s Centre for Engineering and Manufacturing Excellence (CEME) motor plant in Dagenham, with youngsters from the local area given the chance to meet stars from the worlds of football and entertainment, including West Ham United’s Kevin Nolan, Watford legend Luther Blissett, and former Chelsea star Paul Elliott, as they immerse themselves in a whole range of activities and workshops.
For the first round of weeks of action games on October 15, Arsenal take on Sunderland at the Emirates Stadium, Watford meet Crystal Palace, Hartlepool United go up against Wycombe Wanderers, and Plymouth Argyle travel to Dagenham and Redbridge’s London Borough of Barking and Dagenham Stadium. The following day, the Gay Supporters Football Network (GFSN) runs an anti-homophobia awareness football competition in Clapham, and the Muslim Women’s Sport Foundation (MWSF) holds a national Futsal tournament at Birmingham Futsal Centre.
At Villa Park on October 17, Birmingham City manager Chris Hughton is attending a Black and Asian Coaches Association (BACA) coaching masterclass to help to educate aspiring BME coaches about the different elements required to become a top-level manager. Continental Star general manager, Lincoln Moses, and many other grass roots supremos, will also be present.
Halfway into the weeks of action, Liverpool host Norwich City at Anfield, Hull City welcome Watford to Humberside, Exeter City play Rochdale, and Gillingham face off with Oxford United amidst a raft of One Game, One Community games on October 22. Regional football competitions take place in both Milton Keynes and Southampton to help create community cohesion the next day.
In the final week, Queens Park Rangers will be running a Gypsy Roma and Traveller (GRT) day, boxing legend Barry McGuigan is joining Kick It Out for its Faith in Football conference at Birmingham City’s St Andrews Stadium, the University of Hull holds an international students football tournament, and Habberley playing fields in Kidderminster plays host to a Barnados 5-a-side competition.
And, after a weekend jam-packed with weeks of action games, including Blackpool’s trip to Burnley, Scunthorpe United versus Tranmere Rovers, and Aldershot Town at home to Crewe Alexandra, Stoke City will bring this year’s initiative to a close by holding a balloon release from the centre circle of the Britannia Stadium prior to their live televised game against Newcastle United on October 31.
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