26 women ready for UEFA B Licence course
As part of the Women's Football Strategic Plan to increase the number of female coaches achieving elite level qualifications, the Association posted an online survey, which led to over 250 coaches giving their feedback.
Everyone who contributed to that survey was then invited to a special workshop in Aviva Stadium to identify the next steps to helping women fulfil their coaching ambitions. And from there, a UEFA B Licence course has been set up for 28 women to take part in.
Amongst the course participants are current Republic of Ireland WNT defender Diane Caldwell (pictured above), former internationals Aine O'Gorman, Marie Curtain and Meabh de Burca, as well as Women's National League stars Noelle Murray and Trish Fennelly-Hunt.
Niall O'Regan, FAI Coach Education Manager, believes the 26 coaches taking part on the course in Johnstown House, Enfield represent the future of female coaching in this country and will inspire more women to follow their lead.
"As part of the continued development of the female game and the increase in qualified female coaches at UEFA Licence level it is great to now have 26 female coaches completing their fully funded UEFA B Licence," said O'Regan.
"The course will be funded through a contribution from UEFA and all other costs are covered by the Association, which is a demonstration of our commitment to continuing the development of the female game and increasing the number of female UEFA Licence coaches."
Sue Ronan, FAI Head of Women's Football, sees this B Licence course has a huge step forward in the development of women's football.
"I am absolutely delighted to see so many women continuing their path on the Coach Education ladder by sitting the UEFA B Licence," said Ronan.
"There is a huge amount of experience amongst these 26 women, from current to past senior internationals, players currently playing and coaches currently coaching in our National Leagues, as well as others who have been involved in football for a very long time.
"We want to see more female coaches involved in the game, whether that is working in women’s or men’s football and having so many of them come together for a course of this level shows that the desire is there."
The Association has recently offered free PDP 1 courses for any players competing in the Women's Under-17 National League, free National D Licence courses to senior players in the National League, and free Actively Working in Female Game (AWFG) workshops around the country.