The Inclusion Advisory Group (IAG) is an independent body within Hampshire FA. Its main goal is to make football inclusive and welcoming for all communities in Hampshire, the Isle of Wight, and Bournemouth. The IAG was established eight years ago to monitor and challenge the progress against Hampshire FA's Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion strategies.
Members of the IAG local stakeholders who are passionate about the beautiful game, community engagement, and diversity. Their membership changes every three years, and the current members include:
Melanie Robinson MBE (independent Chair) Commander of the Navy Reserve
Natalie Weaving (independent Vice-Chair), Typeface Group
Alex Marshall, Spot the Gap & Hampshire FA Director
Hannah Powis, AFC Bournemouth
Robert Pearce, Southampton FC
Duke Harrison-Hunter, Pompey in the Community
Vanessa Raynbird, Hampshire FA Director & Equality Champion
Natalie Washington, Football V Transphobia
The IAG meets quarterly to check and challenge Hampshire FA and support the delivery of the Equality Action Plan. Recently, they have taken on a new approach by engaging with local communities to gather insights and develop a community-centred EDI strategy for the future, aiming to gather insights from local communities and use that data to shape a community-centred EDI strategy for 2024/28.
Alie Chartier, Hampshire FA Community Engagement & Inclusion Officer and secretary of the IAG said “historically, the IAG focused on monitoring and challenging progress, whilst now they also seek to inspire and drive change. By engaging with local community groups, the IAG hopes to increase its impact and understanding of the communities Hampshire FA serves.”
In the 2022/23 season, Hampshire FA launched the IAG's Community Event series, becoming the first County FA to involve its IAG in public community events. We are hoping to inspire other County FAs to follow suit and use their IAGs to amplify the voices of their communities.
In September 2022, our inaugural event focused on Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion in grassroots football, drawing 40 attendees from various organizations at the Stoneham Lane Football Complex in Eastleigh. The first panel, featuring Melanie Robinson, Duke Harrison-Hunter, and Natalie Weaving, emphasized the crucial role of the IAG. The second panel, led by Emily Le Peuple, David Warnes, Abdoulie Sanneh, and Rob Trent, discussed the necessary steps to enhance accessibility, inclusivity, and diversity in Hampshire's football community. Attendees engaged in lively discussions while sharing a warm meal provided by the facility.
In May 2023, our second event centred around Race & Religion in grassroots football at the Rushmoor Community Football Club in Farnborough, welcoming 30 attendees from various groups, including Aldershot Town FC, Royal Navy, Pompey in the Community, Southampton FC, and more. The panel, featuring Anwar Uddin (FA EDI manager), Rita & Sachana (Committee members for Ma Khelchu), and Hannah Kumari (theatre writer and producer), shared their lived experiences as fans, players, and coaches from ethnically diverse backgrounds. They highlighted the barriers faced by ethnically diverse women and girls in accessing football and showcased impactful projects like the Fans For Diversity Campaign and Ma Khelchu. Attendees then participated in three group discussions led by Hampshire FA staff and IAG members, focusing on the challenges and barriers faced by ethnically diverse and religious individuals in grassroots football within Hampshire.
Moving forward, the IAG will host additional events focusing on other strands of equality, such as age, sexuality, gender, disability, and neurodiversity. The IAG will collaborate with the Hampshire FA Youth Network to support young diverse individuals in football.
To stay updated on these initiatives, follow Hampshire FA's social media channels and subscribe to the EDI Newsletter. Those interested in promoting inclusivity and diversity in Hampshire football can request to join the Friends of the IAG LinkedIn Group to connect with IAG members.
Subscribe to EDI Newsletter
Join Friends of the IAG LinkedIn Group
Download IAG Community Event Report - May 2023
If you have any questions regarding EDI and / or the IAG, please contact Alienor.Chartier@HampshireFA.com