Young goalkeeper’s support for footballing community

Henry handing over a cheque to Phil Broom of AITC
Henry handing over a cheque to Phil Broom of AITC
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A footballing charity has been supported by a young goalkeeper who held a penalty shoot-out in his back garden.

Albion in the Community (AITC) is the official charity of Brighton & Hove Albion Football Club and the largest provider of disability football opportunities in the area, with more than 30 regular sessions taking place throughout Sussex.

Henry Phillips has been a regular at AITC’s Worthing Seagulls session since joining in August last year and the 11 year old, who goes to East Preston Junior School, enjoys the regular football so much that he wanted to do something to thank AITC.

He decided to hold a fundraising event and, being a keen goalkeeper, challenged friends and family to a penalty shoot-out.

In return for a donation to AITC, people were given five chances to score against Henry and the event ended up raising £150 for AITC.

Henry recently visited the American Express Community Stadium to hand the cheque over to the charity’s disability club co-ordinator Phil Broom and the money he raised will now be invested into the session in Worthing that Henry attends.

His mum, Sue Phillips, said: “AITC has supported Henry so much with his love of football and given him so many wonderful opportunities which he would never have experienced had it not been for this charity.

“Football has given him the opportunity to play and develop and we have seen such a massive improvement in his skills and self-esteem due to the wonderful coaches who have helped him so very much.”

Paul Brackley, AITC’s disability manager, was full of praise for the youngster.

He said: “As a charity we rely heavily on fundraising as it allows us to not only continue running the sessions we already hold but also to expand into other areas, meaning more people with a disability are given the chance to play regular football.

“For Henry to decide to organise his own fundraising event for us is fantastic and we are very grateful to him for his support.”

For more information on AITC’s disability football sessions, email disability@albioninthecommunity.org.uk.

Albion in the Community is the charitable arm of Brighton & Hove Albion Football Club.

It works across Sussex to help make sport accessible for all, tackle inequality, improve health and education, and provide opportunities.

Find out more about Albion in the Community by visiting the website, available at www.albioninthecommunity.org.uk.

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