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2012 General Report Charity Registration No. 1145443 | Company Registration No. 7765472





Our Vision and Mission


Vision Mission

Everything to Play For


Our values Our brand Why the Homeless FA? Why football?

Training Centre pilots


Applications Our football partners The outcomes Evaluating the pilots Training Centres in numbers Portrait project

Team England 2012


Our supporters Team England Day Wembley Day Believe F.C. (Future Confidence) Homeless World Cup Mexico City 2012 Player Experiences

Homeless FA Community


2013 and beyond


Our four work areas Homeless FA Champions Player involvement



FOREWORD Our first year has been an exciting one. Not only has the Homeless FA come to life, it has started making a difference in the lives of individuals. We have positioned ourselves as the national homeless football charity and will seek to use football to give every person experiencing homelessness in England the opportunity to develop. With an emphasis on personal development, we hope they are able to build their skills and abilities, to gain self-respect and confidence, to improve their health, and ultimately to transform their life. 2012 was a year of many firsts, including the first ever England women’s team to take part in the Homeless World Cup. A coaching staff that included Olympians Rachel Brown and Farah Williams and ex-Homeless World Cup international James Buckley ensured the women had an outstanding experience and worldclass role models. Watching the teams walk out to sing the national anthem in Mexico City proved to be one of the (many!) highlights of a very eventful year. While the tournament in Mexico City was a large part of what our 2012 will be remembered for, it was most importantly the year that saw our identity formed and partnerships developed. The football clubs and volunteers who planned and delivered the six Training Centre pilots have provided us with a blueprint for engaging, supporting and inspiring players. The FA has become a committed partner and their support will ensure football reaches its full potential as a tool for supporting homeless people in England. We have been able to achieve what we have thanks to the knowledge and backing of our Founding Charity Partner, Homeless Link and the generous financial support of BetterTax, our Founding Corporate Partner. We are who we are thanks to the vision and experience of staff and players from homeless football projects across England. We challenged ourselves to be market leaders by speaking with international partners in Scotland, Portugal and Belgium who offered valuable insights, advice and friendship.

“I’ve seen that maybe we have potential in us that we can’t see if we don’t have the right people around us.” Marco, Team England player

Most important in 2012 have been the people who were there to support and build the Homeless FA; staff, volunteers, Community members, partners, sponsors, my colleagues on the Board and players. As pointed out by Marco, one of our men’s team players in 2012, the people we have around us matter. When speaking about what he’d learned during his experience with the Homeless FA he said: “I’ve seen that maybe we have potential in us that we can’t see if we don’t have the right people around us.” That is what shaped the Homeless FA into the organisation that it is, only one year in – having the right people around us. We look forward to many more years of working with the ‘right people’ and organisations and thank them for their belief thus far.

Lindsey Horsfield Chair of the Board of Trustees


INTRODUCTION Welcome to the first ever Homeless FA general report. This report introduces you to the Homeless FA – our vision, mission and who we are – and acknowledges, reflects upon, and shares the work done by the organisation in 2012, our first year of operation. The following pages detail our work to date, and outline the lessons already learned. As Head of the Homeless FA, I am very proud of our achievements in 2012. Within a year we have secured significant partnerships with market-leading organisations in homelessness, football and beyond. We have brought England International and Olympic star Fara Williams on board as our patron, worked with some incredible individuals, and made a real and positive difference to the lives of many homeless people across the country. But we are a very ambitious organisation, and will not be resting on our laurels. 2013 promises to be a year of substantial growth with an exciting expansion of our work. Owing to demands placed on the organisation to take part in the Homeless World Cup in Mexico City, much of our energy and resources in the last year were devoted to ensuring a safe and enjoyable experience that benefited all our players. It was important that all of our work reflected our inclusive vision, our desire to improve the lives of homeless people in England and our focus on the personal and social development of our players. The Training Centres, Homeless World Cup and Homeless FA Community were how we achieved this. As is outlined in the final section of this report – 2013 and beyond – there are several other areas of work that will be addressed going forward. When I look back on this incredible first year, one moment really stands out for me. Following a match at the Homeless World Cup, our women’s team were taken to one side by respected international referee Hary Milas. This is what he said:

“You are an inspiration to me, and all who have the opportunity to watch you play”

“I just wanted to say thank you on behalf of the referees. It is a great honour to be able to referee teams like England at the Homeless World Cup. Everybody is starting to fall in love with Team England, It makes it all so worthwhile when you can officiate teams like yours that give it your all. You are an inspiration to me, and all who have the opportunity to watch you play. I wish you all the very best and thank you for making a difference in my life.”

Hary Milas, HWC referee to Team England women

What makes it even more satisfying is that, throughout their time with us, all of these players made real and positive steps to transform their lives. I am incredibly proud of our players. As we often say, our players are everything to us. And our players have everything to play for.

Gareth Parker Head of the Homeless FA 2

OUR VISION AND MISSION The Vision and Values of the Homeless FA were determined by staff, volunteers and players from homeless football projects across England. A consultation was undertaken in autumn of 2011 to take into account the various approaches, ethos and experiences that exist in the sector. These are outlined in the text below and are brought to life through our work.

Vision Every homeless person has the potential to change their lives positively and football can facilitate such a transformation.

Mission The Homeless FA supports all initiatives that use football as a means of improving the lives of homeless people in England. We believe that every homeless person has the potential to change their lives positively, and that football can facilitate such a transformation. We use football to give every person experiencing homelessness in England the opportunity to develop their skills and abilities, to gain self-respect and confidence, to improve their health, and ultimately to transform their life. By promoting fair play and inclusiveness in the context of football, our primary focus is on personal and social development. Central to our work is promoting positive self-perception of our players while challenging and changing the public perception of homeless people. We encourage the homelessness sector to utilise the power of football, and empower the sporting world to recognise football’s potential to support the most vulnerable members of society. This includes education about the complex needs and challenges facing our players. We support relevant research, and the monitoring and evaluation of homeless football initiatives. We influence relevant policy makers and sporting bodies, and so facilitate greater engagement with our players. Team England As the designated national partner of the Homeless World Cup, we select and manage the England national team for the annual World Cup tournament. Every person experiencing homelessness in England will have the chance to be part of this team. Priority is given to the personal growth of the players, promoting a positive image of what it means to be homeless in England.


‘EVERYTHING TO PLAY FOR’ Our values The Homeless FA has three core values at the heart of everything we do.

We’re dynamic: We are passionate, ambitious, confident and empowering. We’re approachable: We are inclusive, accessible and easy to understand. We’re honest: We show the authentic, unvarnished reality. We do not apologise for who we are.

Our brand The Homeless FA is the homeless football charity in England. As an organisation we are dynamic, approachable and honest. Our brand reflects this identity.

Why the Homeless FA? Many homeless people face a variety of challenges – these can include drug use, alcohol use, and mental health problems. Lack of meaningful activity may exacerbate these, and may contribute to failures to adhere to treatment regimens or positive moves towards more secure permanent accommodation. Research has contributed to the increasing evidence base that suggests that accessing positive activities enables homeless people to regain a positive identity, increase self-worth and motivation, relieve boredom, develop new skills and build social skills and networks. All of these factors can act as a catalyst for homeless people to make positive and lasting changes in their lives.

Why football? Overwhelmingly, during consultation and research with players and staff, football has been identified as the preferred sport for engaging with these individuals. Football is a team sport that encourages communication, physical health, has a low demand on resources and a global following. In England, football also has the widest potential for partnership, working across sectors as professional clubs engage closely with their local communities.


TRAINING CENTRE PILOTS Consistent with our Mission, we wanted every person in England experiencing homelessness to have an opportunity to play at the Homeless World Cup in 2012. We also wanted the programme to select these individuals to reflect our values, and to be an enjoyable and positive experience for all participants. The Homeless FA is built on collaboration and partnership working, recognising the assets and value which different organisations and individuals can bring to our programmes. With this in mind, we worked with four English Premier League clubs to host and deliver our 2012 Training Centre pilots. Part of the reason for this ambitious partnership approach was to immediately place the Homeless FA as an aspirational organisation/brand alongside the Premier League clubs.



Similar to a job application , the Training Centre application questions asked players to think about their strengths, weaknesses and challenges that they have overcome in the past.!

415 applications received! (354 men, 61 women)!


Each application was assessed. We wanted to identify individuals who were ready to change their lives positively and demonstrated how the Homeless FA Training Centre could help faciliatate this change.!


To ensure the safety of all players we contacted references for all successful applicants. These conversations helped us understand the unique challenges and opportunities facing each player.!

Some references were concerned they would negatively influence an application. Going forward ,we need to make clear that this is not the case. Information given is to help the players, not restrict access.!


Our football partners In 2012 we worked with the charitable arms of four Premier League football clubs: Albion Foundation, Arsenal in the Community, Everton in the Community and the Manchester United Foundation. Through these four partners we were able to run six Training Centres – three for women and three for men. While 2012 saw us focusing a lot of our resources on the Homeless World Cup in Mexico City, we were keen to ensure that every player engaging in a Training Centre programme was able to gain a tangible benefit by taking part. The 5-day programme of activity included: •

The FA Junior Football Leaders Award, which provides a basic introduction to the leadership skills required when involved in football. The course introduced 4 areas: assisting football activity sessions, an introduction to refereeing, helping with a team and different football events.

Football training in a small-sided game format provided by coaching staff from a professional football club.

A football player experience including stadium tour and club kit.

An underpinning personal development framework unique to each football club, all aiming to deliver within the outcomes framework.

Each player received a certificate from the club for participating in the programme.


The outcomes As this was the first year that these Training Centres were to be delivered, we outlined a broad range of outcomes against which the programme would be evaluated. These were monitored, by Homeless FA staff and volunteers, through observation, interviews and players’ self-reporting. Players were selected for the next stage of the Team England programme through this monitoring. Findings from the pilots will inform the outcomes framework and data collection methods used in future years.

1. Increased levels of reported self-confidence and resilience 2. Improved levels of reported self-esteem 3. Increased leadership skills 4. Improved reported management of stress 5. Increased employability 6. Increased sense of inclusion for socially isolated groups 7. Increased interpersonal skills

Evaluating the pilots As with all areas of our work, we wanted to understand what worked well and why. We spoke with staff from each of the Training Centres, Homeless FA volunteers, players (those who completed the Training Centre programme, and those who did not) as well as staff from homelessness services who supported players.

Key findings: • • • • • • • •

Training Centres were a positive experience for players and of benefit to all those who attended. ‘Open Days’ before the Training Centres begin would provide an opportunity for players and coaches to meet in advance and help reduce drop-off after week 1. Any qualification provided to players needs to be suitably targeted and useful – accreditation is not essential. Lack of transport was the primary reason for non-attendance. Providing match tickets to players increased a sense of association with the club and strengthened relationships between staff and players. Consistent staffing was crucial: in the Training Centre programme and also in the classroom and practical sessions. Quality of delivery was essential to creating a welcoming and aspirational environment – kit, catering, venue, staff professionalism and certificates. Sessions should be delivered weekly, on a consistent day of the week, over a five-week period to minimise likelihood of non-attendance.

“Being selected at the Regional Training Centre meant that I mattered, even though I had not played football in years. It was a special moment for me, as it gave me the opportunity to train at my team's training ground, meet with others in a similar situation to myself and exchange life experiences whilst learning new skills and gaining new confidences.” Mauva, aged 52. 7

Training Centres in numbers

6 Training Centres delivered!

131 players took part in the 5-day programme!

2,795 contact hours!

79% retention across all Centres!

41 women and 90 men participated!

Team of 7 Homeless FA volunteers!

Drop-out was greatest after week 1!

103 Junior Leader Awards were achieved!

Portrait project We were also able to give each player a portrait photograph of them in their Training Centre club’s kit. These were taken by Tom Bunning, assisted by Brian Whar. Similar images were taken of players selected for the England squads when they visited Wembley.


TEAM ENGLAND 2012 Our supporters The Homeless FA enjoyed a huge amount of support from a range of organisations and individuals in 2012. Financial support from our founding corporate partner, BetterTax, as well as from StreetSmart and the FA, enabled our players to take part in the Training Centre pilot programme and, for some, to go on and represent England at the Homeless World Cup in 2012. Manchester United Foundation continued to support the personal development of players with their programme Believe F.C.

Team England Day 2012 was the first year that England sent a men’s and a women’s team to the competition. 16 men and women were selected from our Training Centres and celebration day hosted by Manchester United. The celebration brought together 22 women and 29 men from across England who had successfully completed the Training Centre programmes and demonstrated a commitment to changing their lives positively. Players were given a tour of Old Trafford and took part in a 4-a-side tournament at Carrington Training Ground, where they were welcomed by Brian McClair, an ex-Manchester United and Scotland star. A speech acknowledging the achievements of the players over the past three months was given by John Shiels, CEO of Manchester United Foundation.

Wembley Day The Homeless FA launched its partnership with the FA at a special reception at Wembley Stadium. The day also saw the launch of the new Umbro kit worn by Team England at the Homeless World Cup.


Believe F.C. (Future Confidence) When speaking to players and collecting references, we recognised that we needed to ensure that players were occupied with positive activities throughout their time in Mexico. This was made possible by working with Manchester United Foundation to deliver Believe FC. Topics covered throughout the course included Goal Setting, Motivation, Visualisation, Perceptions, Communication, Self-Belief, Managing Emotions and how to access the tools and techniques taught to them throughout the tournament.

Homeless World Cup Mexico City 2012 The Homeless FA is the designated National Partner in England for the Homeless World Cup. We are part of the network of 73 national partners working with the Homeless World Cup to change lives through football. At the annual Homeless World Cup tournament, the national partners come together to demonstrate how football has the power to change people's lives. The tournament creates an opportunity for players to represent their country and to meet and build relationships with homeless people from other countries. The 10th Homeless World Cup took place in Mexico City from 6-14 October, 2012 in the Zócalo. Our staff team in Mexico comprised individuals from Manchester United, homelessness services, the England Women’s team and people with experience of homelessness. Their skills, experience and compassion ensured our players were well supported and safe throughout the ten-day tournament. 10

Player experiences We are committed to ensuring the voices of our players are at the fore of everything we do. These statements are from one-to-one interviews completed with each player at the end of the tournament. probably the hardest change for me is to push forward with my career or my goals because I like to sit where I am. I need to push forward now.” “When I was doing my action plan for my future, I need to be more dedicated to my school work because things don’t come easily.” “I wanna try and get a job. Get a coaching job.”

What have you learned about yourself during this whole process? “I had confidence issues before and I had people, like I didn’t know if I was liked or not. To be a bit more confident in myself and know that I can be a good person.”

“It’s opened up my mind to loads of things. Like when I come here I was open minded to a degree but not as much as I am now. It makes me listen to other people's opinions and stuff like that. Take on board everything and reasons for it.” “Being able to trust people in better ways. Especially in the hostel I’m in, I have trust issues with people in the hostel.”

“I’ve seen that the way people think about me, I didn’t see that before. And I’ve seen that maybe we have potential in us that we can’t see if we don’t have the right people around us.” “That I can, when I put my mind to things, I can pretty much do anything. I can be a teamplayer. I can do loads of things.”

Anticipated impact and changes players will make when they return to England. “Learning about perceptions. Normally I’m good at applying myself to things but I never really took into consideration when I’m applying for a job or in my social life how people might perceive me. So, like to my friends, people that I associate with. I think it’s important I give people a good perception of myself.” “…there were one or two things that I will think about when I get home. It has made me a better person.”

“… loads, a hell of a lotta changes. First of all stop smoking cannabis. Up until coming to Mexico itself I smoked regularly. I’ve been off it for two weeks now and that’s going to be a big help in my life.” “The experience brought home my value as a team player and that of being a valued member of the wider society. Taking part in the Homeless World Cup has completely changed my way of thinking and how I view life.

“One issue I have is waiting in my life to move on like careers and stuff. That’s the main change and


HOMELESS FA COMMUNITY Having developed from a network of homeless football projects across England, the Homeless FA Community underpins all of our work. It is open to any project or organisation which uses football as a means of improving the lives of homeless people in England. Members of the Community are able to engage with other projects, share knowledge and attend regional Homeless FA meetings. They have exclusive access to centralised resources such as start-up packs, good practice tools, funding resources, as well as reduced rates on pitch and equipment provision. These rates have been secured with the support of our Homeless FA Community partners, PowerLeague and Mercurial Sports. The FA is going to provide key backing to this area of our work. Their support for our work will ensure that homelessness is not a barrier to accessing sport. We have opened up registration to the Community and aim to have 1,000 members by 2015.


2013 AND BEYOND Our four work areas Much of our focus in our first year was on the player selection and participation in the Homeless World Cup. Going forward, Team England will be one of four main work areas, integrated with the other three to ensure a broad reach and impact.

Homeless FA Community We want to continue to expand our Homeless FA Community. By working with homelessness and football organisations directly, we can better share and influence practice. A higher number of members will also help us to secure benefits and opportunities for the sector.

Team England We will continue to develop our Training Centres and in 2013 will have 18 Centres (9 men’s, 9 women’s) across the country. We understand the challenge that transport presents to players and the services that support them and will continue to expand our partnerships and reach beyond 2013.

Research The Homeless FA believes in the value of effective monitoring and evaluation and the benefit that it can bring to all organisations and their players. Data and information which clarify what works, how and why, are crucial to securing funding, discovering new opportunities and improving delivery. We work in partnership with Upshot, the online management system, which allows us to monitor and evaluate all of our work. The Homeless FA aims to be a hub of knowledge in this area of sport-fordevelopment, gathering as much evidence as possible on how football can make a positive difference to the lives of people experiencing homelessness.

“Football for Change” The Homeless FA recognises the need for practical tools that Homeless FA Community members can use in their local delivery. There are several programmes across England that have been developed by Homeless FA Community members and which use football as an education engagement tool. Our purpose here is to develop a collection of football and education modules tailored to people accessing homelessness services in England. We will be working on this with services, players and educators in 2013.

Homeless FA Champions In 2013 we will continue to work closely with our patron Fara Williams and seek to recruit a second patron who also shares our vision. We aim to create a strong team of ambassadors to help us promote our work. All of these people will be known as our “Homeless FA Champions” and will represent all areas of the Homeless FA, from homelessness projects to Premier League football clubs alike.


Player involvement In 2012 we met our first group of players. Each of them faced complex needs and challenges and each of them wanted to change their lives. Many of them have gone on to do so by engaging with education, gaining further coaching qualifications, moving into their own accommodation, re-establishing positive relationships, reducing drug and alcohol use and gaining employment. One of our players, Mauva, shared some of her hopes before and after the Homeless World Cup: “Although I was homeless at the time, I wanted to do something that was important to me and gave me the opportunity to build upon my own personal strengths… so that I could provide value to myself and others. My life is a lot better now on a lot of different levels: I have my own home; and I am now employed, doing what I love most. I am eating more healthily and have now lost nearly 2 stone in weight since returning from Mexico City [and] have become more active. For example, during late Oct to Nov I had walked over 43 miles. I am a lot more confident in many areas of my working and private life. Mauva is one of several of the players who took part in 2012 who have expressed interest in taking part in the 2013 programme, acting as volunteers and mentors for new players. Such participation proved to be effective in 2012 when James Buckley shared his experiences at the Homeless World Cup in 2011 with those in Mexico City. When asked from which session he’d gained the most, Anthony said that he'd valued past players taking part: “it was because of Bucko’s story at the end. That is what it is all about and because at the time, in the team, there was a lot of bad aura, bad energy. A lot of people thinking about football too much and not thinking about what this whole process is all about. His story really brought it all back to what it should be.” It is an ongoing challenge for the Homeless FA to make sure the football aspect doesn’t ‘take over’. There is a need to change culture and this can be achieved by involving players who have previously taken part and understand our values.

“It’s for the future” After completing the programme, players were asked what advice they would give to those taking part in 2013. “Always smile. Keep your heads up and make sure you enjoy it. Don’t go back to England and say, “I wish, or I wish I had.” Marco. “Have a laugh and don’t worry too much about the scores and stuff. And practise your penalties.” Jess.

“Just come out here, not to play football but to experience something new for the future. Cause that’s what it is. It’s for the future. So enjoy it.” The advice of Emmanuel (aged 19) to players in 2013

“Just come out here, not to play football but to experience something new for the future. Cause that’s what it is. It’s for the future. So enjoy it.” Emmanuel.


ACCOUNTS In our first year of operations we generated an income of £160,375 while expenditure over the year was £122,094. There are currently £38,281 in reserves for the organisation, which will last 16 weeks on average spend to date.

Income received in 20121

Cash Gi(s  in  Kind  


There was still outstanding income for 2012 at the time of publication, which will be included in our 2013 report. 15

2012 General Report Charity Registration No. 1145443 | Company Registration No. 7765472 Registered address: 48 Coton Road, Nether Whitacre, Coleshill, Birmingham, B46 2HL

Homeless FA 2012 General Report  

A review of the Homeless FA's first year of operations and achievements.