IAG Community Event

IAG Community Event: Disability and Neurodiversity in Grassroots Football

Join the Hampshire FA Inclusion Advisory Group for the third community event, focusing on disability and neurodiversity.

Hampshire FA’s Inclusion Advisory Group (IAG), an independent body whose purpose is to make football inclusive for all communities, are hosting their third community event on February 27th 2024 between 7pm and 9pm.

The free, virtual event will take place via Zoom, and participants will have the ability to interact with guest speakers and ask questions throughout the session.


The purpose of the event 

The IAG, along with Hampshire FA staff, work extremely hard throughout the year to make the grassroots game as equal, diverse, and inclusive as possible. This event will give the opportunity to share the specific work undertaken in the remit of disability and neurodiversity.

However, this is not a one-way conversation. The IAG and Hampshire FA would like to gain a better understanding of the needs and wants of the members of our grassroots community who have a disability or are neurodiverse. This event will give our members the opportunity to pass on their first-hand experiences, share their stories, and provide crucial anecdotes which will help shape our support going forward, and help build stronger links with local community groups, charity partners, and individuals.


Event structure

19:00 – 19:05

Welcome & Introduction from Melanie Robinson, Chair of the IAG

19:05 – 19:20

Overview of Hampshire FA’s EDI work by Alie Chartier, Community Engagement & Inclusion Officer; and Glenn Brailey, Disability Pathway Lead

19:20 – 19:35

Networking Workshop in small breakout rooms

19:35 – 19:40

Time for a coffee & tea break

19:40 – 20:20

Discussion Panel

Topic: Disability & Neurodiversity in Grassroots Football

3 Guest Speakers. See guest speaker details at the bottom of the page.

20:20 – 20:30

Q&A from the audience

20:30 – 20:40

Reflection and short break

20:40 – 20:55

Networking Workshop: Sharing Best Practice & Reflecting on the Q&A in small breakout rooms

20:55 – 21:00

Closing Remarks from Chair of the IAG, Melanie Robinson



Ben Mathews

Hampshire FA Disability Football Ambassador 
Special Olympics Great Britain - Unified Football Head Coach

Ben has been working within inclusive sport for 10 years, with the majority spent at Special Olympics, the largest sports organisation in the world for people with intellectual disabilities. Ben has coached several sports at a variety of levels for athletes with and without disabilities and was selected as the Head Coach for Great Britain, leading the GB Unified Football team to a Bronze medal at the 2023 Special Olympics World Games in Berlin. Providing opportunities for people with and without intellectual disabilities to meaningfully participate together on the same teams is an area that Ben is most passionate about. Ben is also the Hampshire FA disability football ambassador, providing support for all clubs within the county wanting to become more inclusive and to develop their disability football programming. 

After the event

All attendees will receive key action points and notes from discussions, as well as a link to the recording, should they wish to re-watch the session.

All attendees who wish to keep up to date with future events are encouraged to sign up to the EDI newsletter. Our fourth event will take place in the summer of 2024, and will focus on Sexuality & Gender in Grassroots Football. Stay in touch to sign up and receive more information once a date, venue and speakers are confirmed.


How to attend

To secure your space, follow the registration link below. All attendees will receive an email with a link to join the session on Zoom 48 hours before the event date. Please check your spam folders, and if you have any questions or concerns, please contact Alienor.Chartier@HampshireFA.com


If you have any additional accessibility requirements, we're happy to support in any way we can, with reasonable adjustments (e.g. British Sign Language interpreter. Closed Captions, etc). Please contact Alienor.Chartier@HampshireFA.com prior to the event, so that we can arrange this accordingly.



7pm – 9pm

Online – Zoom