We caught up with thirteen-year-old football mad Chloe Kerr, a year on from her joining the Sussex Disability Football League.
Chloe, who lives with autism and learning difficulties, began her football journey as a player with her local village side Fishbourne Romans five years ago, but in the past year the game has helped her to grow in confidence and as a person.
She attended the Chichester City Ladies Football Festival and that is where her love for the game began to flourish.
Since then she has become involved with the Sussex Disability Football League where she played for Albion in the Community and now plays for Wick Dynamos’ newly formed disability team. She is a regular, committed and popular player within the league and travels from Chichester to Lancing to play in the leagues monthly fixtures.
Chloe has also joined Chichester City Ladies youth section and plays in goal for the Under-14s; she receives fantastic support from the women’s side and can often be found as their mascot on match days.
Captain of Chichester City Ladies, Lauren Cheshire said: “Chloe has been my mascot for the season she is a great kid and an inspiration for me to perform well. I am so proud of her and everything she has achieved.”
In addition Chloe has become a big fan of Selsey FC this season and attends as many home games as she can, acting as their ball girl as well as assisting with the warm up of their first team goal keeper Connor Kelly.
Connor is really supportive of Chloe and recently wished her good luck for her game in the Sussex Disability Football League on social media, which made her day!
Connor said: “Chloe often watches our games; she also supports me in my match day warm up and cheers me on during the game which is really nice.”
Chloe’s dad, Rob Kerr is extremely thankful for all the opportunities Chloe has had and believes that it has made her confidence blossom: “Without football in Chloe’s life I really feel that she wouldn’t have come on leaps and bounds like she has.
“The love of the game she now has and people she has met has given her so much confidence and being around football is when she is at her best.”
Jade Harker, Sussex County FA Football Development Officer added: “It really is a delight to see how well Chloe is doing and I have no doubt that her journey will continue for many more years.
“Seeing the support that mainstream clubs like Chichester and Selsey are giving players such as Chloe is just brilliant. For Chloe to have her role models give the same support to her that she gives them is the beauty of football.”
For further information on Disability Football in Sussex, please contact Development on the following:
T: 01903 766855