In December of 2016, a new Coach Education Pathway was launched by the FAI to add structure to the route one takes when becoming a coach whether that be Grassroots or Professional. The pathway (below) is how aspiring coaches should go about becoming accredited.
STEP 1 - SAFEGUARDING & GARDA VETTING
The first step to becoming a coach, training childern (under the age of 18) is to be Garda Vetted and have completed the FAI Safeguarding 1 course.
Applicants who wish to be Garda Vetted must
- be over 16 years old
- if aged 16-18 years, have submitted signed “Parent / Guardian” consent form
- have or have access to a valid email address
- have access to the Internet
- have completed the ‘Proof of Identity’ process
More information regarding the Garda Vetting process can be found here.
The Safeguarding 1 course is held by local FAI Development officers in different regions. The 3 hour mandatory course is aimed at any person working or volunteering with children in football in any capacity. Click here to book a course or to see available dates.
STEP 2 - PLAYER DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM
To take the 1st Player Development Program course (PDP 1), one must first be Garda Vetted as well as having completed the Safeguarding 1 course. PDP 1 lasts the full day and incorporates both classroom based and practical learning. The course is aimed at coaches who wish train players from the U6 – U9 age group. If coaches wish to train older age groups, it is encouraged that they complete further courses such as PDP 2 or PDP 3 also know as Youth Intro. Following the completion of the Safeguarding 1 course, the PDP 1 course and completing the Garda Vetting process, you will become a qualified coach. It is then up to you as to how far you want to take it whether that be stick to coaching the U9’s or continue on the Coach Education Pathway and improve your coaching skills.
BENEFITS OF COACHING
You have a front row seat to watching how the players you coach develop and improve. You can help young players develop into not only good players but good citizens. You can also develop, gaining leadership, communication and public speaking skills.
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