In partnership with the National FA, Luton Borough Council, and GSV Sports Management, we were pleased to hold the recent Get Into Refereeing Event which was aimed at people from historically underrepresented backgrounds.
There were over 110 people in attendance at the event which took place at Crescent Hall, Luton on Wednesday 15th November.
There will be a number of high-profile guest speakers from the refereeing and football world who led interactive sessions about the benefits and opportunities within the game. Abu Nasir (Step Forward Luton Ambassador) open the event followed by Raj Randhawa (FA EDI Referee Manager) who gave an insight into The FA Refereeing Strategy.
Aji Ajibola (BAMREF Ambassador) described BAMREF's purpose which is to raise the profile, offer guidance, support, mentoring and counselling to existing Black, Asian & Mixed Heritage Referees. Aji further explained how the organisation works with the football authorities, other football diversity and inclusion organisations, professional and national game clubs, players and fans to ensure there is a level playing field for existing and new Black, Asian & Mixed Heritage referees to progress in the national game. Another aim of BAMREF is to increase representation within all levels of the game from Black, Asian & Mixed Heritage Referees.
Isaac Blakey (Bedfordshire Referee Development Officer) then delivered an interactive Get Into Refereeing workshop where the attendees learnt more about the referee pathway, decision making and key skills in order to be a good match official.
Following a sit down meal, Abu Nasir led a question and answer session with a panel of special guests including Arran Williams (PGMOL EDI Manager), Jarnail Singh (FA/PGMOL Ambassador), Raj Randhawa (FA EDI Referee Manager) and Dev Treham (Sky Sports Representative).
The final session was delivered by Reon Stewart (Kick It Out, Grassroots Manager) on Referee Victim Support. Reon explained about the process referees had to follow to report any discriminatory behaviour that they encounter.
The event was closed by Abu Nasir and Raj Randhawa thanking everyone for their attendance. Raj reminded the attendees of the bursary available to them to help fund a place for candidates for the FA Referee Course.
If you are interested in getting into refereeing or have any questions please contact Isaac Blakey via Isaac.Blakey@BedfordshireFA.com