Pat's defender David Partridge was on hand last week to pay a visit to 4th and 5th class pupils of St Lorcan's in Palmerstown and to kick off the St Pat's Soccer Challenge in their school.
The St Pat's Soccer Challenge is a five week course designed to teach the basic soccer skills of shooting, dribbling, passing and tackling to young people in a fun but challenging way.
The course is launched with a player visit to the classroom where the importance of values such as hardwork, dedication and training as well as the need to lead a healthy and active lifestyle are emphasised.
Then over a five week period a fully qualified and approved coach from the
club takes the pupils through their paces and at the end of the course each pupil receives a certificate of achievement as well as a goodie bag from St Pat's.
A successful funding presentation to Wyeth in Clondalkin means that St Patrick's Athletic in association with Clondalkin Youth Services will be able to roll out community coaching in Clondalkin over the coming weeks under the theme of anti-bullying in the classroom.
A generous donation from the St Patrick's Athletic Supporters Club as well as support from Bank of Ireland Inchicore means that community coaching will also be offered to primary schools in the immediate area of inchicore as well as to other schools in the surrounding areas.
“We piloted the course at the end of the last school year and got a great response to it”, said club promotions officer Declan White.
“At the moment we're preparing to roll out the St Pat's soccer challenge across 12 schools for up to 700 children.
It's a big undertaking for the club but engaging with school children in this way will be hugely beneficial for all involved – for the children, for the schools and for the club”.