Contact NCFA

Have your say in a National Children’s Football Alliance.

If you are interested in joining the NCFA please contact:

National Children’s Football Alliance
Suite 21, 70, Churchill Square,
West Malling,
Kent.
ME19 4YU.
info@thecfa.co.uk
Telephone:
+00 44 (0)1732 758419
Mobile:
+00 44 (0)7813 082584

Management Committee

Ernie Brennan

CEO

Contact Ernie
Ernie Brennan, founder of Children’s Football Alliance, started his career in music extensively touring Europe and USA with major recording artists whilst signed to Music for Nations.

As an award winning film maker and with 11 years experience as Head of Production working for an independent production company Ernie has produced and directed many social inclusion programmes for National and regional governments. Whilst producing social documentaries he became inspired to research the need for a Children’s Football Alliance.

With 20 years experience in the children’s game and 10 as a grass roots head coach he continues to facilitate mixed ability football advocating development through football as well as development of football. An award winning children’s football coach Ernie is the founder of a local girls’ football club and works closely with the extended children’s football family campaigning for equal rights at regional, National and International level.

Brendan Hanlon

Chairman

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Brendan has spent his career in the voluntary sector having held various senior positions at national organisations. An experienced marketer and fundraiser, he has been Head of Fundraising at three charities and Chief Executive of an international HIV/AIDS charity. He is a governor at his children’s primary school, a mentor to young people and lives in Brighton.

James Lamont

Vice Chairman

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As a family man and keen sportsmen (jack of all master of none) James believes passionately in the need to allow children to naturally develop their personality through the medium of sport….

James is a partner at Hart Brown solicitors and as part of his practice (his main area of expertise is corporate & commercial law) he also advises a number of clients in the social enterprise sector and through this he has become involved in the NCFA.

As a committee member he hopes to harness his legal and organisational skills for the benefit of the NCFA.

Paul Cooper

Director

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Paul Cooper has been coaching for 16 years and founded the Give Us Back Our Game movement with Rick Fenoglio in 2006. He has delivered many courses and workshops at clubs, Universities and councils…

He has written two books, Learning through Play and Chapped Legs and Punctured Balls as well as a chapter in Lynn Kidman’s book Athlete Centred Coaching.

He is involved in the Inner City project, Football Football which delivers a games based programme for 5-12 year olds in 24 centres across England and Scotland.

He works in the Inclusion Centre at a secondary school and has written two football based programmes on behaviour management (Raise your Game) and sex education (Ball Matters) for boys.

He is at present coaching an U18s team and two local community based programmes.

John Carmicheal 

International Children’s Football Alliance, NED.

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John Carmichael was educated at the Ridge Church School in Accra, Ghana, Clifton College and Oriel College, Oxford. His family has had connections with India and Africa over several generations. In 1988, John followed in his father’s footsteps – and those of HRH the Prince of Wales – by being made an Honorary Chief in Ghana. John is a published author and worked as Honorary Producer in Residence at the Ghana Film Industries Corporation. He has worked as a consultant in the aid related entertainment sector since the early days of Live Aid in a private, public and voluntary sector capacity leading to his work with Luciano Pavarotti & Friends and UN messengers of Peace. He went on to become Millennium Commissioner for Ghana tasked with establishing the international Meridian twinning link and development partnership between Greenwich and Ghana linking countries North to South across the Sahara. His experience with film, music and sport in development settings led to his working with England Manager, Sven Goran Eriksson and then partner Nancy Dell’Olio in setting up Truce International to mobilise the power of football as a force for the peace. John is Chairman of the family business in Ghana and commutes regularly between London and Accra in his capacity as an international strategy adviser and global development consultant.

John Casey

Marketing Director

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John is a company Director and social innovator specialising in sport system re-design, John develops tools and ideas to promote co-operative behaviours in children. A full time researcher of over ten years in areas such as environmental influence, social intelligence, competition behaviours, motivational design and children’s development, John brings a wealth of creativity and ideas to the children’s game. An advocate of development through sport John works passionately towards changing the impact of competition on children’s behaviour to in turn highlight how our attitudes and values in society manifest themselves in children’s sport. John’s research has taken his work worldwide in the development of creative solutions for children’s football and is proud to bring his love of the children’s game’s to the NCFA.

Vanessa Wheeler

National Stakeholder Manager

Contact Vanessa
Mum, early years advisory teacher, football coach and manager! I got involved in children’s football when my own son was told that he wasn’t “good enough” for the team… he was 7 years old! What started off as a “B” team has grown into a mixed ability group of 34 6 to 12 year olds. I have been guided by the principles of the Give Us Back Our Game campaign and offer inclusive football to children in the local community. It is great to see children from 5-15 all enjoying The Beautiful Game in a park, learning to play and playing to learn!

Don John

Race, Equality and Diversity Officer

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Don John was born in North West London of Sierra Leonean parentage. The second of six children Don spent his early years in Kilburn, Harlesden and Dollis Hill. After leaving Kilburn Grammar School Don went to work for H.M Treasury and spent some 10 years there which included working in the Parliamentary Office for the Chancellor of the Exchequer; at the time Dennis Healey. Don also had the privilege of working with the only other black person in the department dub poet Linton Kwesi Johnson who became a friend. After leaving the Treasury Don then spent some six months in the Caribbean before taking up a position as a Youth and Community worker for Southampton Council for Racial Equality (SCRE). Later as Director of SCRE he was prominent in delivering key changes which influenced the manner in which the city responded to issues of “Race”.

Over the last 30 years Don John has been involved in training and consultancy for a variety of agencies and services in the city and across the UK. This has included lectures, training programmes, advice to organisations and one to one consultations as well as fighting race discrimination cases and leading campaigns to respond to issues of race inequality. This work has taken him all over the country including Northern Ireland.

David Ramzan

Special Educational Needs Officer

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For many years David has been Working as learning support assistant in special educational needs for children with varying abilities from profound to mild learning difficulties, physical and psychological difficulties, whose ages range from 6 – 17 years.

His work involves delivering specific planned strategies and differentiation within the school educational curriculum, including sport, literacy, numeracy, art, design technology, ICT and independent living skills.

As an award winning grass roots football coach David supports students in their education needs, administering physiotherapy, hoisting, feeding and administering medication.

His work for the Let’s Kick Racism Out of Football campaign has earned David National recognition amongst the football fraternity. He formed Invicta Valiants Special Needs-Disability Football Club in 2004, two of his three children have special needs, one is visually impaired and one has learning difficulties, and due to the fact they were not able to join a local football team or school team because of their specific needs he established the award winning club which now provides football for mixed ability children across the South East.

David works with the schools sports educational programme in developing special needs sports activities and competitions for the students to compete in the annual Kent Disability School Games and Panathlon.

Malcolm Lee

Projects Manager

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Founder of the Don’t X The Line (DXTL) campaign, formed in December 2003, promoting Zero Tolerance towards aggression, verbal abuse, racism & bullying the initiative was set up to help promote an environment for fair play and educate people of all ages the importance of respect and tolerance in football.

When Mal introduced his son to the sport his concerns grew for the many thousands of children and referees who had to witness the appalling behaviour that was happening at children’s football matches. 20 years experience in grass roots football inspired him to form the first independent organisation to challenge poor behaviour at children’s football matches. The voluntary organisation lobbied and campaigned tirelessly to draw the problems to the attention of authorities and consequently gained the support from the FA, PFA, PL, FAI, PGMOL, LFC and EFC.

Mal received the Bobby Moore National Award presented by HRH Prince William, & Stephanie Moore in 2010 in recognition for all his hard work.

DXTL continue to work closely with Premier League Referee’s and provide a valuable resource to all the football community.

Anthony David

Projects Manager

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A former qualified NVQ sports trainer, football and fitness coach who worked for a youth training scheme in Islington for 16 – 18yr old students. 17 years experience Tony is a highly respected grass roots football coach working with a broad section of children in the community.

Tony is a senior coordinator of the Positive Futures programme mentoring young coaches who are engaging young people in the community. Tony’s worked for Arsenal in the Community since January 2004 and continues to help provide opportunities for 8 – 19 year olds channelling their energies to get involved in sports activities and further fields.

Tony’s experience working with children of all ages on their estates facilitating football activities contribute and help reduce anti-social behaviour, promote healthy living and often present children with opportunities to develop interpersonal skills, communication skills, social skills, education and improve their football ability.

He has organised many matches, festivals and tournaments with local kids playing teams all over the country where they have benefitted immensely and have come away with great experiences. Tony continues to coach an under 16s team with the emphasis on fun rather than win at all costs.

Mick Gale

Peace Fields Project Ambassador

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Mick started adult life as a professional footballer eventually moving into teacher training giving him the perfect combination of football knowledge with an ability to motivate.  He combined teaching with coaching very successfully in the UK, Africa and New Zealand.  Working also within the FA structure in the women’s game he lifted the girls centres of excellence in Brighton and Cornwall to a higher level with an ultra-modern approach to the now recognised ‘4 Corners philosophy’.  Setting up training camps for elite players in the USA followed and then working in Canada with university soccer and a National Development Centre.   The English FA called upon him to do match analysis and scouting when youth teams travelled on tour and he worked to develop an Elite Youth training programme.

Mick now works at La Manga High Performance Centre as a Technical Development Coach, mainly for youth and female teams. He is married and has five, now adult, children. He likes to joke and his serious side reflects in his football.  All sessions must be fun and he aims to get the players laughing in the first two minutes.  He has always advocated the women’s game achieving equal status.  Still ambitious and self-motivated he continues to have high ambition for the future of football.

Colin Farley

Sponsor

Colin has over 30 years experience in the Insurance Investigation arena, which he entered following his earlier occupation as a detective in the Police Force.

Throughout his insurance related career, he has initiated many innovations which have lead to well publicised successes in fraud investigations, computerised claims solutions and training videos.

His interest in health related matters and new media communications has been a significant factor in the latest areas of activity.  He is a qualified homoeopath and counsellor.

As the Founder of Capricorn Productions he has supported the NCFA from the outset by providing media and admin services.

Colin is also a keen supporter of football with grandchildren who are actively involved in children’s football.

Dave Neita

Patron

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Dave Neita, founder and director of ELECT, is a lawyer and published poet….

Called to the Bar of England & Wales in 2000, Dave was a member of the legal team, which brought the largest group action claim in the UK on behalf of thousands of South African asbestos miners. Dave has also represented many youngsters excluded from school and he the last lawyer to Milton Hanson (deceased), the outspoken Nurse who confronted and fought against racism in the NHS. Dave has been working in the local London community and he has a strong background in working with pupils with the aim of building confidence, raising achievement and developing leadership.

Dave also runs a project that employs poetry as a vehicle for expression for users and carers within mental health services. This project also assists users to draft parliamentary questions to the executive of the government, which expresses their political concerns. He has been featured in MENTAL HEALTH TODAY for his work in Creative Psychiatric Care.  Although his work as a barrister and poetry takes up much of his time Dave also volunteers his time in the community and the Mayor of London has highlighted him for making an outstanding contribution to life in London.

Dave is a UK ambassador for the European Year of Equal Opportunity for All: Face of the Year Campaign and holds an MA in Cultural Leadership. Dave has a Masters of Arts in Cultural Leadership and he is the Author of the book Manuscript Of A Scripture Man, the Filmmaker of the film Ben Okri’s Mental Fight: Harmony of Politics and Heart, and Writer and Recording Artist of the Spoken Word CDs The Lie Centenary… The Truth Will Set You Free, PURE (Passionate Unadulterated Romantic Expressions) and NSNR (New School Nursery Rhymes).

Sue Palmer

Patron

suepalmer.co.uk
Sue Palmer is the author of over two hundred books, software packages and TV programmes about primary literacy. She is a popular conference speaker in the UK and beyond, both on this subject and on child development in the modern world, about which she frequently writes and comments in the media. Since publishing her best-selling book Toxic Childhood in 2006, Sue has been involved in many national campaigns around education, outdoor play, screen-based entertainment and the commercialisation of childhood. She is currently a member of the Scottish Government’s Early Years Task Force and co-chair of the Task Force’s committee on Culture Change.