Records were broken as over 350 participants (the highest of any previous event) from various special needs organisations across NSW engaged in the eighth annual NOVA Employment Football4all Gala Day on Sunday 3rd of June at Valentine Sports Park.

It was a carnival like atmosphere in what was a fantastic day in Sydney with the likes of Pararoos stars Ben Atkins, Connor Marsh and coach Kai Lammert, Kevin Connolly Member for Riverstone and player appearances from Hyundai A-League clubs Western Sydney Wanderers (Brendan Santalab, Jarryd Tyson and Jackson Bandiera) and Central Coast Mariners (Paul Izzo, Brad McDonald and Tom Heward-Belle) posing for snaps and handing out awards and medals.

The ever popular jumping castles as well as balloon artists did their bit in keeping all participants happy while there were guest appearances by the PCYC Activity Truck, Quakers Hill Local Area Command Police Force, Quakers Hill NSW Fire and Rescue present on the day as competitors from various age groups took part in multiple small sided games.

The continual growth of the NOVA Employment Football4all Gala Day promoted Football NSW’s commitment to special needs football.

Photos: Football NSW/Gavin Leung.

Football NSW CEO Eddie Moore reiterated that statement and was full of praise of the event.

“It was great to have once again staged this wonderful event at our very own headquarters.

“Football NSW is committed to supporting opportunity for people with disabilities to participate in football as players, coaches, referees or administrators and we are committed to developing an environment where accessibility and diversity are valued and nurtured.

“NOVA Employment Football4all has now been running for eight years and is going from strength to strength and I want to congratulate everyone who participated in the event and of course thank all the volunteers and staff who made this event possible.

“NOVA Employment Football4all is a fantastic initiative which Football NSW will continue grow and develop for years to come.”

Kings Langley – Open Goals Special Needs Program, St Ives Football Club, Wagga Wagga Football4all, Marrickville FC All Abilities, Nepean Soccer Dragons, St George Warriors, Macarthur Magic Special Needs Football Club, North West Women’s FC, SNAPP A ROOS, Kellyville Soccer Club ‘Super Soccer’, CPA Tiger Cubs, Sutherland Titans FC, Mt Druitt Town Rangers AWD Futsal, Rouse Hill Rams, West Pennant Hills Cherrybrook FC – Dural and Raiders FC were all the clubs that took part in this fantastic event.

Football NSW’s Head of Football for Women’s and Schools Football Hayley Todd was impressed with how the day unfolded.

“This year’s event was the biggest to date with the inclusion of new Football4all Clubs, the NSW Powerchair Development League and a Football4all Futsal event that included teams from Southwest Football Foundation Trust – Sunshine Football teams from New Zealand.

“It’s phenomenal to see the Football4all Gala Day grow year on year.

“I would like to thank the Football4all Club Coordinators for their endless passion and drive in providing football opportunities for these players.

“Each year we strive to make the Football4all Gala Day experience better than the last and this year was no different.

“We had over 350 participants take part in the gala day on Sunday and for the first time the support network included a guide dog.”

Powerchair Football also made its appearance for the fourth successive year.

It was well received by the participants as its renowned as being one of the fastest growing sports for powered wheelchair users around the globe.

With well over 30 participants from clubs such as the Central Coast Mariners, Newcastle Jets, Western Sydney Wanderers and Sydney FC taking part in the event, their talents were also noticed by the hundreds of interested spectators who were present observing local talent in what was an amazing spectacle.

There was also a special Development League that took shape on the day which included players from as young as five years old taking part in what was a memorable day for everyone involved

Football NSW was greatly assisted by our major partner NOVA Employment for the Gala Day celebrations.

Football NSW wishes to thank all the clubs, associations and staff who were involved in making the day such a success and would like to especially congratulate all the participants, coaches and family members for their inspirational support for NOVA Employment Football4all.

– Football NSW Media Release