England and Manchester United star Alex Greenwood has urged women and girls across the country to take advantage of the Grow the Game scheme.
With an investment of £1.5m last year, the scheme saw the creation of over 1000 new female and disability grassroots teams and applications for 2019 are now open again.
The aim of Grow the Game is to encourage even more people from traditionally under-represented groups into regular grassroots community football participation, with prospective teams able to apply for grants of up to £1500 to get started.
And Greenwood, who hopes to be heading to this summer’s World Cup with the Lionesses, recognises the importance of giving girls a chance to get out and play football and joins her national team boss Phil Neville in championing the scheme.
“Having joined Everton academy at eight-years-old, I was lucky enough to have access to top quality coaching and regular football from such a young age,” she revealed.
“However, I know plenty of girls that were never able to access the same footballing education that I had, because the number of opportunities simply weren’t there.
“It’s therefore incredibly important we make sure this is no longer an issue going forward and that if girls want to play competitive football they have ample opportunities to do so.”
In addition, existing male adult clubs and teams will also be able to apply for financial support from The FA, with the return of the retention-based scheme called Retain the Game.
The scheme, which launched for the first time last year, helped to support over 2,300 male teams, with grants given to help provide financial support for clubs across the country. The scheme will launch again on Wednesday 17 April.