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By Haddenham Webteam - 9th October 2023 10:57am
Club Fit to Focus on Football Future
Haddenham Youth Football Club (HYFC) held its Annual General Meeting (AGM) on Thursday, 28th September 2023.
Chairman Alex Wagstaff highlighted a strong first year for the new management team with the Club match fit for growth and football development.
The committee elected last Autumn was returned with two new members added: Sarah Robertson (U9 Team Admin) and Ali Holmes (U11 Head Coach). Both Sarah and Ali have played big parts in HYFC's recent success, with key roles in events (Christmas Party and Festival of Football) and co-ordinating the Club's new kit line respectively.
Club Treasurer Gareth Cheeseman reported on a record number of players generating a small operating loss with a healthy balance sheet as HYFC invests in equipment, kit, coaching development and IT systems.
The Club's sponsorship and fundraising drive as well as cost control measures are already reaping rewards in the 2023/24 season with five new team sponsors as well as the record-breaking Festival of Football.
Alex Wagstaff said:
"Last year we set out five priorities: welfare, community, communications, football and development. We are making great progress in all those areas and have spent the last year securing a solid base, from safeguarding to sponsorship; mobile floodlights to our Community Fund.
"We attained 2 Star FA Accreditation which was a big achievement for the Club and included signing up to respect, inclusion and diversity codes. "There is more to do and our costs — from pitches to referees; fines to fees — will only go up."
The Chairman continued:
"Now, I want to concentrate on football, developing a club where everyone feels they have a place and belong. Where everyone wants to take pride in playing football and being involved regardless of their level."
Key achievements in 2022/23 include:
The Club has 83 volunteers helping 17 teams. The Club's safeguarding systems have never been stronger or faster, but the expectations for welfare and coaching levels are increasing.
The HYFC Community Fund, supported by Haddenham Beer Festivals Trust, has been established to ensure no family struggling to pay will miss out on football.
A refreshed brand has been launched and new website and apps have been rolled out, improving communications as well as safeguarding and data protection compliance.
Stronger partnerships are in place, including with Haddenham Parish Council, the County FA and Football Foundation, whilst the Club's new Development Plan lays out goals for more players, extra teams and improved playing facilities.
On the field, league, cup and tournament wins were recorded by U11s, U12s, U13s, U15s and U15G.
"The U12 and U13 Girls teams were the highlight for me last year. New coaches stepped up to run these teams, supported by our football development officer Nick Cuthbert, and we have started a new U10G team this season."
The chairman also announced a formal affiliation with Haddenham United FA. The Clubs will remain independent, but there is now a FA-recognised player pathway from U6 to adult male football and HYFC and HUFC will work together on improving facilities and generating grant income.
Haddenham Ladies is already under the HYFC umbrella along with Walking Football for 45+ and there are plans to create a pan-disability team with local club partners.
"We want to raise the standard of our coaching even higher and will give our team of fantastic coaches more backing.
"I want to thank everyone who has supported our Club over the last year — partners and sponsors; coaches and team admins; refs and assistant refs; Festival volunteers and kitchen helpers and — of course — all our wonderful players and parents/carers. We could not do it without you!"
Club Members, including parents and coaches, can find copies of the slides used on the evening here.
If you are interested in playing, coaching or supporting the Club, say firstname.lastname@example.org