The East Riding FA Unsung Hero of the Month award recognizes those individuals in our county who are going above and beyond to create a fun, safe, and inclusive environment for people to play and enjoy football.
We know that grassroots football in our county is supported by an amazing group of volunteers who put their heart and soul into supporting the game for the benefit of others. This award is our way of recognizing and celebrating their efforts.
The winner of this month’s award is Nicola Fitzpatrick from Howden AFC.
Nicola is the Treasurer at Howden AFC and is credited with helping transform the club’s financial position by putting in place a number processes and structures that have helped ensure Howden AFC can continue to provide affordable grassroots football.
This includes registering the club with the charity’s commission and creating a hardship for the clubs’ members. Nicola said “Over the last couple of years, I have implemented a direct debit mandate system for subs & Xero for accountancy purposes along with financial policies. This financial year I have implemented a formal financial budget for the year which I continuously monitor. I have introduced a confidential hardship fund whereby the club will support parents, carers, and members if they are experiencing financial hardship. Alongside this I have also registered the club as a charity with the charities commission and currently in the process of registering the club for Gift Aid.”
When asked why Nicola dedicates so much time to Howden AFC Nicola said, “I enjoy seeing the progress the club is making within the community. Children from the local area are enjoying playing football with Howden AFC and the growth we have experienced in the last 6-12 months is evidence of this. My youngest son plays for one of our U9s teams and it's great to be able to part of the club and make a real difference.”
The club are making great strides on and off the pitch with the development of new facilities a top priority. Nicola said, “I hope that we are hope able to bring our development plans to fruition and then be able to expand our offering to the local community in lots of different ways.”
When asked what her reaction to being named the East Riding FA Unsung Hero of the Month was Nicola said, “I was very surprised! I am very thankful for this award - It now has pride of place in my office.”
East Riding FA Participation and Communications Officer Chris Johnson said, “Nicola really is an unsung hero and is one of many volunteers who form the backbone of the club. The club are in a very healthy position because of the policies and initiatives Nicola has put in place and we are delighted that her contribution to grassroots football in East Riding has been recognised.”
If you know someone who deserves recognition for their contribution to grassroots football, then please click here and nominate them for next month’s award.