Youngsters involved in the Kickz football project at Morecambe held their own version of the World Cup in June at Salt Ayre Sports Centre in Lancaster to celebrate the achievements of all those involved in the initiative.
Kickz, a sports inclusion programme, has been operating since November 2006, when an initial pilot project operated for a six week trial in a Lancaster School. The success of the project in reducing criminal damage and anti-social behaviour was such that the scheme was subsequently extended to five other locations throughout the Lancaster City Council area.
The Kickz World Cup saw 120 young people involved in the tournament, which was co-organised by Lancashire Constabulary, Morecambe Football Club and Lancaster City Council.
Everyone who participated received a certificate and the winners and runners up each received a trophy presented by the two local Members of Parliament, David Morris MP for Morecambe and Lunesdale and Eric Ollerenshaw MP for Lancaster and Fleetwood. All the finalists will be invited to watch Morecambe when they move to the new Globe Stadium for the 2010/2011 football season.
Lancashire Police Chief Inspector Tracie O'Gara, said: "The World Cup event has been a fantastic celebration of the Kickz scheme. Kickz was set up to be a diversionary activity for youngsters, to provide them with something positive to do with their free time and it continues to engage with young people throughout the Lancaster and Morecambe District."
Janet Preston, Morecambe Football Club's Community Sports Manager, added: "This was a superb event and we were delighted with the turn out. This has brought together young people across the district and a special thanks goes to the coaching staff for their commitment and support to the Kickz Project."
The winner of the U14 trophy was the team based at Skerton Community High School playing as Germany, with the runners up from Morecambe High School who represented Argentina.
Skerton Community High School playing as France also won the Over 14 trophy, with the runners up from Heysham High School, playing as The Ivory Coast.
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