A Portadown man is one of two finalists for the prestigious People’s Award at the McDonald’s Irish FA Grassroots Football Awards.
Keith Hall is the Irish FA Small Sided Games Co-ordinator for Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon. For over 15 years he has worked tirelessly on the administration side of grassroots football across the borough to ensure more children have the opportunity to play football in a safe, inclusive and fun environment.
He will be going up against Jude McLaughlin, a former Dungiven Celtic player who has recently volunteered his construction expertise and free time in the evenings and weekends to oversee major renovation works at the grassroots club, saving it thousands of pounds in the process.
The winner of the People’s Award will be announced at the national awards ceremony on November 2 in Belfast City Hall and will be determined by the public through online votes via the Irish FA website.
The annual McDonald’s Irish FA Grassroots Football Awards, which celebrate 23 years in Northern Ireland this year, recognise the unbelievable work and commitment of football clubs and volunteers who give up their time and make a long-lasting impact on young people and communities across Northern Ireland.
Northern Ireland legend and McDonald’s Fun Football Ambassador Pat Jennings said: “Without grassroots football volunteers none of this could happen.
“Through the years I have witnessed first-hand the significant impact that McDonald’s Fun Football has had, and continues to have, on the lives of young people in Northern Ireland.
“It was fantastic to see McDonald’s recently announcing that 250,000 children from across the UK had benefitted from Fun Football in less than a year since the new programme launched.”
Last year McDonald’s launched its new Fun Football programme, which will provide over one million five to 11-year-olds with the opportunity to enjoy free football coaching across the UK.
The programme will deliver over 10.5 million hours of Fun Football over the course of the next four years making it the largest grassroots participation programme in the UK. The programme will be delivered in collaboration with the Irish FA, Scottish FA, The Football Association of Wales and a network of national coaching providers in England.