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Crusaders FC

Cumberland's Grassroots Heroes Rewarded at County FA Event

Local winners of the 2018 FA and McDonald’s Grassroots Football Awards were announced at Cumberland FA’s awards evening at Hunday Manor Country House Hotel on Friday 21 September, as the County FA celebrated the fantastic work that goes into grassroots football within the region.

The Grassroots Football Awards recognise and celebrate the work of individuals and groups to instil The FA’s PRIDE values – Progressive, Respectful, Inclusive, Determination and Excellence – and make a positive difference in their club, league or local community.

Following receipt of a record 2,904 nominations, The FA has worked alongside respective County FAs to select appropriate winners across the categories. The full list of 2018 Cumberland FA Grassroots Football Awards winners are:

• Coach of the Year: Craig Johnston (Workington Junior Football Club)

• Community Project of the Year: Dementia Friendly Walking Football

• Charter Standard Club of the Year: Crusaders JFC

• Match Official of the Year: Ben Kinnersley

• Volunteer of the Year: Paul Allen (Carlisle Reivers FC Pan Disability)

• Youth Volunteer of the Year: Conor Cooke (Cockermouth Junior Football Club)

Ben Snowdon, Chief Executive Officer of Cumberland FA, said: “Each year the awards celebrate the hard work and dedication of local grassroots volunteers across Cumberland who make a difference to local communities.

“Without these volunteers, grassroots football in Cumberland simply wouldn't exist. At the County FA, we appreciate every single member of our grassroots workforce and congratulate all of our nominated individuals, leagues and clubs - especially our deserving winners.”

Conor Cooke, the 2018 Young Volunteer of the Year, added: “My favourite childhood memory is grassroots football - and without volunteers, there is no grassroots football. Without me and the other coaches and volunteers at clubs, these kids simply wouldn’t have the opportunity to play football.”

Botcherby Community Centre’s Helen Fisher, who runs the Dementia Friendly Walking Football programme, said: “It’s a big achievement for us; I hope it raises the profile of the club and lets more people know about what’s happening here. The next step for the club is sustainability, so we really need to spread the word. Winning this award will help us do that.”

With the award winners already notified of their success back in July, the Cumberland FA event showcased the winners through videos, which highlighted their efforts throughout the season. These are available to view below.

The evening at Hunday Manor Country House Hotel also raised £277.62 towards the CFM Cash for Kids Sports Challenge, which Cumberland FA are finalists of.

This is a fundraising competition which aims to support local disadvantaged and disabled sports groups for under 18s. The main aim behind Cumberland FA’s involvement is to raise money to support the creation of new PAN disability football centres in Cumberland and a PAN disability junior festival programme which offers organised fixtures, as well as supporting CFM Cash for Kids.

To find out more and to donate, please CLICK HERE

To watch our videos from the night, please CLICK HERE

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Paul Allen

Crusaders FC

Craig Johnston

Conor Cooke

Ben Kinnersley