Our professionally developed Health and Nutrition values are reinforced throughout the sessions. These are structured to start with a group warm up targeting physical areas of development most common to people with DS – low muscle tone, agility, balance, coordination and speed. Among these young individuals, mental abilities vary, but most people with DS have mild to moderate issues with thinking, reasoning, and understanding. They learn and pick up new skills their whole lives, but they may take longer to reach important milestones such as walking, talking, and developing social skills.
SSMF’s aim is to educate disadvantaged young people into rounded, active citizens. We use sports to reach out to them and specifically instill and nurture seven core values that were key to the global success of Sir Stanley Matthews – even beyond football: Education, Ownership & Responsibility, Health & Nutrition, Leadership, Resilience, Innovation & Creativity, and Teamwork. This emphasis transforms the young people we work with into catalysts for social change: last year, we helped 13,782 children at an average cost of £5.22 per child.
Even by going the extra mile, our coaches can only physically engage a finite number of children during each session. Our vision is to increase the number of children we impact across all our projects, thus we are currently building an online learning platform which will increase the number of young people we reach to 35,000 within the first year of being up and running. They will benefit from intensive training in the seven values from wherever they are at any time.