Express & Star

School Whistles up a new 4G pitch

The Amethyst Academy have opened up a brand new 4G football facility at Moreton School.

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The MUGA, which was funded by Moreton School, will provide increased sporting opportunities in the region.

And The Whistle Foundation co-founder Ajaay Sharma has welcomed the initiative.

"My daughter attends Aldersley High School. I met one of the teachers there called Wayne Spicer. We got talking and he sold me on whether we can come on board given the area and the kids that are involved fit with our brief of providing every child with a sporting opportunity," Sharma revealed.

"We've been developing our relationship with them to provide those children with the best possible post 16 sporting opportunities. We provide them with protein shakes, energy drinks and that sort of thing.

"One of the big areas of focus, especially for the trust, is that they needed a decent place to train, and that was certainly one of the driving forces behind the Muga, or the astro turf as I know it.

"Now those kids can go on a Wednesday afternoon and have first rate quality training to supplement their A-Level education as well."

The Whistle Foundation was founded in 2018 and has since launched a number of initiatives, including sending children to watch elite sport across the UK, providing equipment to one of the schools to assist with their student led sport's podcast, and ensuring that children who are post 16 receive the right nutrition to compliment their sporting studies.

The ultimate aim is to provide assistance and sporting opportunities for children, which has been strengthened with the foundation's ties with the trust.

Now, Sharma has his sights set on expanding further, and continuing to increase the opportunities available.

"Our tag line is bringing sport to every child. We sort of water that down, and break it down into three key areas, and that's seeing, believing and achieving," he explained.

"Seeing is making sure that kids have the opportunity to watch football or cricket at an elite level. It can be amateur level as well, but we find that elite level is a big motivator, and it's a fantastic experience for them.

"We cover the costs for their tickets and that sort of thing. Believing is where we are with the Amethyst Academy, so the football programme, which is linked specifically to the Muga, which is where kids can go and sample almost elite level training sessions.

"They don't have to worry about the costs of these things. So, if a child comes to us, and says, I really want to do it but I can't afford football boots, or I can't get to training.

"We will come in and supplement that for them so they haven't got to worry. Then achieving is probably where we're going to go with extending further, which is where we set up some clubs and teams, and help these children go out into the wider world and play sport in the public setting, where it would've never been an option for them.

"It's been great to work with the trust, because there are such a broad range of children that fit with our aims.

"We're able to assist them with any of their needs. It's been a great sample opportunity and hopefully as a collective we can all learn, and then hopefully that can be an example for Amethyst can then be able to roll it out to schools throughout the Black County and the West Midlands.

"The Whistle Foundation are delighted to see their Seeing, Believing and Achieving aims embraced by the Amethyst Academy. We are so excited to work alongside an education provider in the heart of Wolverhampton and hope that we can entice companies to come and assist us on this journey, as we increase youth participation in sport."

If you'd like to assist, or collaborate with The Whistle Foundation, then you can contact them by emailing