For Latics fan and season ticket holder Evan Sephton, the Every Player Counts disability football programme has provided the 13 year old with some unforgettable opportunities.
Having been a part of the scheme since its launch in November 2016, Evan’s development has been impressive, and as well as attending sessions regularly at Wigan Youth Zone, he also proudly represents the club’s disability team in the Greater Manchester Ability Counts League.
The Every Player Counts project, funded by Wembley National Stadium Trust and administered by the EFL Trust, aims to get more people with disabilities involved in football and sport, with Wigan Athletic Community Trust working with over 400 individuals over the past 12 months.
He said: “I really enjoy playing for Wigan Athletic because it makes me so happy and I love having banter and fun with my friends. To pull on a Latics shirt is the best feeling in the world and I just want to do well when I play because I’m representing my club.”
Adding: “I’m a season ticket holder and go to all the home games. The players have been amazing this season and it’s so good to be at the top of League One.
Wigan Athletic Community Trust has delivered over 800 hours of coaching as part of the project, with 10% of participants, including Evan, progressing to play competitive sport.
Sean Rowlinson, Sport and Cohesion Coach, said: “In terms of the programmes we offer, delivering the Every Player Counts project is one of the most rewarding for me because we see participants really come to life and excel at what they have to offer us.”
He added: “Evan’s been fantastic and has been one of the standout participants. He’s gone from being quite shy and quiet but after getting to know the other lads and the players around him, he’s come out of his shell and is now one of the loudest in the group if anything.”
For more information about the Every Player Counts project, please contact Disability Football Officer Joe Pym on 01942 318090 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Wigan Athletic Football Club, Wigan Athletic Community Trust and the DW Stadium are committed to respecting and promoting equality and diversity across all its activities through ‘Together’.
To find out more information about Every Player Counts visit: http://www.efltrust.com/projects/every-player-counts/