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Affiliate using the Whole Game System... 

The affiliation process ensures each club becomes a member of the Sussex County FA in order to play in their relevant league and cup competitions.

Within the affiliation process, clubs have the opportunity to enter into County Cup competitions and make donations to the Sussex County FA Benevolent Fund.

The process happens annually and each club must affiliate by 30 June each year, although greater flexibility will be allowed due to the current COVID-19 pandemic.

Club Affiliation
Club Affiliation Guide
A step-by-step video guide to affiliating a club online using the Whole Game System.

The Whole Game System is an online administration system which allows Clubs, Leagues and Referees’ to deal with their football administration online.

Clubs will be able to maintain their own data with coaches and team information at your fingertips to update.

Leagues will have the ability to sanction online, have links to relevant Sussex County FA data, and in time, links to league websites via Full Time.

All clubs are also required to submit a copy of their accounts for the previous season by 31 March each year. Failure to do so will result in a fine. A balance sheet template is available below.

It is important that clubs complete all the information requested on the application otherwise it will be returned and the affiliation process will be delayed.

Note: Any new clubs wishing to affiliate for the first time should first off contact the Sussex County FA, with their Club name and details of the Club Secretary.

What is the National Game Insurance Scheme (NGIS)?

In 2011, The FA set out to raise the standards of insurances that could be made available to its affiliated members, to enable access to a uniformity of cover across the grassroots game that hadn’t been seen before.

The overarching objective for the NGIS has been to ensure that insurance products, specifically tailored to the needs of grassroots football, could be made available to all.

In 2012, Bluefin Sport was appointed by The FA to deliver the NGIS. The NGIS provides two core covers - Public Liability and Personal Accident.

It is compulsory for all affiliated clubs to have public liability insurance and all affiliated teams to have personal accident insurance.

When affiliating to the Sussex County FA via the Whole Game System, clubs may choose to opt-in to the NGIS public liability insurance. You can also opt-in to the NGIS personal accident insurance via your County FA affiliation, to meet the minimum cover required.

If you require a higher level of personal accident cover, this can be purchased from Bluefin Sport online, or by completing an application form and returning it to them in the post, with a cheque in remittance of the premium payable.

Details of the minimum cover required by the Sussex County FA can be found on the Bluefin Sport website.

Clubs have the option to purchase the compulsory insurances either via the NGIS or elsewhere. Other products are available and independent advice can be sourced from a licensed insurance broker.

How can I find out more about the NGIS?

To learn more about the NGIS, please refer to the Bluefin Sport website, or watch this video produced by Bluefin Sport about the NGIS.

Sussex County FA is an introducer to Marsh Ltd. Bluefin Sport is a trading name of Marsh Ltd. Marsh Ltd is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority for General Insurance Distribution and Credit Broking (Firm Reference No. 307511). Registered in England and Wales Number: 1507274. Registered Office: 1 Tower Place West, Tower Place, London EC3R 5BU.


Due to the COVID-19 Pandemic, there will be temporary changes to The FA’s safeguarding affiliation requirements, which are summarised below:

1. Lifted the requirements to enable County FAs to affiliate teams where:
a. A coach/manager and/or assistant does not hold an in-date accepted DBS Check;
b. A Club Welfare Officer (CWO) does not hold an in-date accepted DBS Check:
c. A CWO has not completed the relevant safeguarding training (Safeguarding Children Workshop (SCW), Welfare Officer Workshop (WOW) and online Safeguarding for Committee Members (SCM).

For the avoidance of doubt, these requirements are being lifted purely so that clubs can affiliate and coaches and CWOs must have an accepted DBS Check prior to carrying out their roles.

2. Extended the requirements for renewals of DBS Check certiļ¬cates that expire between 1 March and 1 October 2020, by 12 months. This will affect approximately 40,000 renewal checks, if all these individuals re-engage with football when it restarts.

Table 1: Summarises the changes to club affiliation processes in relation to Club CWOs

Role Current affiliation requirements Change in light of COVID-19
New CWOs - In-date DBS Check;
- SCW, WOW and free online SCM online course. 
- Require SCM;
- Lift requirements, for CWOs to have SCW/WOW and in-date DBS Check to enable affiliation. 
Existing CWOs - As above;
- + 'in-date' SCW, using free online re-certification course from 2021/22.
- Lift CRM requirement for DBS Check, to enable affiliation. For DBS Checks expiring 1 March 2020 to 1 October 2020, extend by 12 months.

Table 2: Summarises the changes to club affiliation processes in relation to coaches

Role Affiliation requirements Changes in light of COVID-19
Coaches, Managers and Assistants in under-18 teams - In-date DBS Check required for affiliation;
- Minimum one named coach/team;
- Named coach must have SCW by 2021/22.
- For DBS Checks expiring 1 March 2020 to 1 October 2020, extend by 12 months; 
- Lift CRM requirement for DBS Check, to enable affiliation.
Coaches, Managers and Assistants in FA Charter Standard clubs with under-18 teams - As above;
- + FA Charter Standard clubs are required to have one coach per youth team, with FA Level 1 / in-date SCW.
- For DBS Checks expiring 1 March 2020 to 1 October 2020, extend by 12 months;
- The requirement for an FA Level 1 Coach per youth team has been paused.

SCW: Safeguarding Children Workshop
WOW: Welfare Officers' Workshop
CWO: Club Welfare Officer
SCM: Safeguarding for Committee Members'

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