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Wednesday 10 Aug 2016
Kids have a ball at Swiss camp

A group of kids from Northern Ireland with disabilities had lots of summer fun at a special football camp in Switzerland.

They were among 50 kids from the disability football groups of the Irish Football Association, Everton FC, Queens Park Rangers FC, Bayer 04 Leverkusen, SV Werder Bremen and FC Basel 1893 who took part in activities in Basel.

The annual Special Youth Camp, run since 2007, is organised by the Football Club Social Alliance and the Scort Foundation. 

The 10th anniversary gathering brought together kids with mental and/or physical disabilities for an exciting week full of exchange, fun and football. 

Activities included climbing, beach soccer, a tour of the FC Basel 1893 stadium and lots of coaching sessions.

The highlight of the week was a huge 10th anniversary celebration. For one entire day the FC Basel 1893 Academy got taken over by the kids and was turned into a fun festival venue.

The FCB U21 team joined the participants in morning training sessions and showed them some new tricks and skills. The excitement got even greater when FC Basel players Taulant Xhaka, Tomas Vaclik, Adama Traore and Marek Suchy teamed up with the girls and boys in the afternoon for lots of football-themed fun.

“It is always great seeing the kids play and we are very happy to be part of this,” said Basel player Adama Traore.

Irish FA coach Clare Carson pointed out: “The week was really fun and interesting. Myself and the other coaches have never worked so hands-on with a group of kids with disabilities.

“For us it was a great opportunity and an eye-opener on how to approach certain situations, especially in the sporting context when it comes to including a vast variety of different disabilities.”