Osei Sankofa, Kick It Out’s Education Officer, has challenged “anybody who is serious about understanding equality and diversity” to enrol on our Equality and Diversity Awareness in Football Award, as the latest graduates of the course are announced.

Twenty-one students working in various roles across the industry have passed the latest iteration of the award, which is run in partnership with Solent University.

It aims to educate and develop the future leaders of football around the areas of equality and diversity, which are becoming increasingly central in the game, and in everyday life.

Activities on the six-unit course are designed to trigger critical thinking and develop leadership skills around equality and diversity in football, which can then be applied in the workplace day-to-day.

“I was able to learn a lot about myself and issues within the game which is something that will always stick with me throughout my life.” - Lekan Odushola

Nearly 150 students have successfully passed the Award since its inception in 2015. They include people working in a variety of careers across the industry, from administrative roles to coaching and community projects, as well as ex-professional footballers and current football managers.

Osei said: “Anybody who is serious about understanding equality and diversity, particularly in a football context, should consider enrolling on Kick It Out’s Equality and Diversity Awareness in Football Award.

“With so many high profile cases of racism and discrimination both on and off the pitch during the 2018-2019 season, it is a very timely reminder to everyone involved in the game there is still much work to do. Through this learning tool, we can start to re-address how we tackle the many issues that so many of us thought had gone away.”

“This course has been brilliant! I want equality for women in football, particularly female football coaches. This course has enabled me to challenge the inequality and imbalance further. I have gained more knowledge on how to make everyone equal, with the backing of the nine protected characteristics within the Equality Act (2010). I have the confidence to challenge issues to ensure best practice is present at all times.” - Shannon Hayes

The next iteration of the course is likely to begin in Autumn 2019. More details will be announced in the coming months.

“The course is perfect as it is I don’t think you need to change it. People live busy lives and the flexibility and the time dedicated to the course will enable all participants to gain the knowledge. I also like the way the course is set up for different learning styles with feedback given in the different sections. Your feedback has really made me think even further out of the box and different ways of looking at incidents. So, SOLENT and Kick It Out, Thank you !!!!” - Baljinder Singh

The full list of successful candidates is as follows:

Catherine Gallagher

Eloise Stingemore

Rich Howgill

Shannon Hayes

Louis Bamgboye

George Chambers

Ashley Colbourn

Nina Crombie

Maria Horner

Steve Smithies

Arran Williams

Laura Wilson

Mie Oestergaard

Ediong Udom

Harsimran Singh

Huxley Barnacle-Best

Lekan Odushola

Marisa Schlenker

Oli Moore

Robyn Kennerdale

Baljinder Singh