Everton pair Nikola Vlasic and Davy Klaassen joined in the celebrations for Everton in the Community’s 30th birthday by taking part in a disability session at USM Finch Farm recently.
Ready to be put through their paces in a skills session ran by EitC coaches, the Blues duo were eager to meet up with participants from EitC’s Pan Disability teams, before taking part in a short competitive game.
The two first-team stars were also keen to learn about the disability programme and how much it has grown over the last 30 years, as well as understand more about the other wide-ranging programmes run by the Club’s official charity.
As part of the ongoing celebrations for the charity’s 30th anniversary, different members of the Everton family, including other first-team squad members, Under-23s, Everton Ladies players and Club Ambassadors, have been visiting a number of programmes throughout the month of February that are run by Everton in the Community every day across Merseyside, giving them all the chance to witness first-hand the difference EitC is making to the lives of so many people.
Holland international Klaassen spoke to evertontv during the visit and said: “I’ve heard a lot about the work of Everton in the Community since I joined the Club but this has been the first visit I’ve been involved with and it’s been a really great experience.
“Having the chance to meet all of these people, learn about the programme and be inspired not just by how much they were all enjoying themselves but how good they all were as well was fantastic. It was clear to see how much they train and how much the opportunity to be a part of this team means to them all.”
Everton in the Community currently run nine different pan-disability and specific impairment teams that are open to all disabled children and adults, both males and females.
The programme is all-inclusive and there are teams available to those with any disability, whether that be learning, physical, reduced stature, autism, cerebral palsy, deaf or partially sighted. The EitC coaches currently work with 130 disabled players, who all have the chance to play in competitive fixtures, giving the participants opportunities they wouldn’t otherwise have.
Funded by both the Premier League and BT, the Club's official charity is proud to have the largest and most respected disability football programme in the world and on average it provides football and physical activity opportunities for thousands of disabled children and adults each year.
If you are interested in one of the sessions or you would like more information, please contact Jessica McNally, Everton in the Community Disability Development Coach, on 0151 530 5212 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Share your memories and stories of how Everton in the Community has supported you or a loved one on social media, using the hashtag #EITC30.