UEFA Grassroots Awards: Recognition for Copenhagen community club!

Frederiksberg Boldklub, in the Danish capital of Copenhagen, are the 2020 UEFA Grassroots Award winners for Best Grassroots Club.

Founded in 1912, FB demonstrate an inclusive approach to the game, running teams for people of all abilities – boys and girls, juniors and seniors.

Frederiksberg promote fair play among all their teams, and, having been recognised at national level for their work, are now being honoured by UEFA.

Special focus: Far-reaching community

Frederiksberg Boldklub’s commitment to social responsibility reaches far beyond football and their members.

Over their 108-year history, the club have committed to being a positive influence within their community, and in recent years, have joined forces with the Danish Refugee Council to provide playing opportunities for refugee children and youngsters from marginalised families, helping them integrate into society and enjoy the physical and mental health benefits of playing football.

In collaboration with diabetes and heart charities, FB also offer football-based fitness training for the elderly and men and women with dementia, as well as a team for children aged between one and three.

During the COVID-19 lockdown, the club arranged a variety of activities including online bingo events on Facebook and Corona self-training videos whereby two youth players each day had to perform a challenge. There was also e-football (for youth members), and referee training (for players and coaches) via the Danish Football Association’s (DBU) virtual clubhouse.

In their own words: ‘Football is for everyone’

“We are a football club for everyone, from the youngsters to the old boys at 50, 60, 70 years old. And there is room for everyone, both women, men, girls, boys,” says Martin Busk, the club’s head of administration.

“We can offer children and youngsters from the entire county as well as the capital city a lot of content in their everyday lives that keeps them away from challenges in life. It’s important because football is for everyone regardless of level or the colour of your skin. Football should be fun primarily. To me, it’s important that the club can embrace all kinds of people.

“It’s also a part of our DNA to show fair play towards the opponent, the teammates, the coach and the referees. Therefore, we are very inclusive and have a lot of focus on that amongst our young members.”

Best Grassroots Club 2020: Bronze and Silver winners

Silver: Chadderton Park Sports Club (England)

At Chadderton Park, inclusivity defines the club’s entire ethos. The club welcomes players of all abilities and believes fun is more important than winning. It now has over 90 different teams for children, seniors, disabled players and people with cerebral palsy, demonstrating that a football club is more than the name suggests and can truly be the heart of a community.

Bronze: Greenisland Football Club (Northern Ireland)

Greenisland is a community-orientated club for juniors and seniors with around 400 players and 100 volunteers who ensure playing opportunities for male, female and disability groups. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the club continued to serve their members and the local area, delivering food packages to community groups and medication from pharmacies to people in need. They also offered online skills competitions and football fun packs for their junior members.

What are the UEFA Grassroots Awards?

UEFA launched the annual Grassroots Awards in 2010 to reward excellence and shine a light on some of European football’s unsung heroes.

Each of our 55 national associations are invited to nominate candidates each year, with award winners then selected by UEFA’s Executive Committee, following recommendations made by the organisation’s Grassroots Panel bureau and Development and Technical Assistance Committee.

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