This week, Liverpool County FA will be continuing to announce the winners of this year’s FA and McDonald’s Grassroots Football Awards (GFA), which acknowledge and celebrate the incredible leagues, clubs and volunteers involved in the game across Merseyside.
During what is a difficult time for so many of us, with grassroots football hit incredibly hard, it is a pleasure to be able to pay tribute to just some of the many factors that make our game so special – and emphasise why, when we can come back, we’ll come back stronger.
It’s with great pleasure that Liverpool County FA presents the 2020 League of the Year accolade to… the Warrington Junior Football League.
Best placed to explain why the league wins this award is the person that nominated it – Catherine Barrow.
“As a club member of the Warrington Junior Football League (WJFL) for the past five years, it has in the majority of that time been under the leadership of Paul Dawson,” said Catherine.
“He is a straight talking, dedicated, driven and committed Chairperson of the WJFL and strives to give every child within a 10-mile radius of Warrington the opportunity to play grassroots football. His drive, determination and leadership have served the WJFL well to make it a league where it is a safe and enjoyable experience for children to learn and play.
“Paul has made a significant contribution to grassroots football over the years, but none more so than in these unprecedented times. His awareness on the hardship some clubs are suffering at the moment has been of paramount concern and worry for him and his response to this crisis has been to set up a league Welfare Fund to assist those clubs that have been hit hard (£7500).
“His vision and forward-thinking is atypical of a person in his position as other leagues would not have the foresight or creativity to put such a scheme in place or be prepared to make an investment to assist clubs.
“The WJFL is a fantastic league built on solid principles and commitment from the League Committee and the leadership of its Chairperson, Paul Dawson,” added Catherine. “What makes the WJFL stand out is that it is a league built on rules and this means there is no margin of error for inconsistency or misinterpretation. That keeps all the Club members on the right track and provides a fair and consistent approach so no one is any different to anyone else. They are innovative in their approach to player safety and set high standards, which makes clubs, their members and players able to play and enjoy football.
“One of the reasons why Billinge Juniors moved the whole club to the WJFL is because of their high standards and consistency. It is a highly competitive league at youth level and this league always appears to take the lead on adopting new approaches without hesitation. As a club that meets our expectations because of its strong leadership. We are honoured to be part of the league.”
Congratulations to Paul and everybody involved in the Warrington Junior Football League, from us all at Liverpool County FA.