Jacksonville Jaguars, the only NFL team in the UK with a permanent presence, are working with Active Communities Network and Fulham FC Foundation, to expand the hugely successful grassroots American football programme, Jag Tag. The partnership with the sport for development charity will see eight new satellites clubs established through £39,790 of National Lottery funding awarded by Sport England as part of Sport England’s Satellite Club Programme.
The only NFL team in the UK with a permanent presence, the Jaguars first introduced Jag Tag to the UK in 2015, teaching young people in London primary and secondary schools a simplified, non-contact version of American football. Since then, the programme has become extremely popular with over 10,000 children, 38% of whom are female, taking part in schools across the UK.
With four satellite clubs having been sustained from the 2017/18 programme and the launch of eight more throughout London and Manchester, the programme provides new opportunities for young people to get active free of charge outside of their school environment, with a particular focus on females and areas that would not otherwise have access to American Football. For those looking for the opportunity to take it further, satellite clubs act as a feeder for participants to join their local BAFA (British American Football) teams.
Hussain Naqi, Senior Vice President of International Development at the Jacksonville Jaguars, said:
“The Jaguars aim is to make American football accessible to fans of all ages across the UK. The launch of eight more programmes throughout Manchester and London boroughs means that we are able to provide more opportunities for young people to get out and get active. We’ve already seen great enthusiasm from children who currently participate in the sport and we know that more children will embrace this opportunity as we continue to develop throughout the UK.”
Supported by Fulham FC Foundation, the launch of further Jag Tag satellite clubs throughout Manchester and London boroughs is part of the Jaguars aim to grow grassroots American football in the UK.
Jayne Molyneux, Director, Children and Young People, Sport England, said:
“We’re delighted to be supporting funding the Fulham FC Foundation with National Lottery money to give more young people the opportunity to get active through playing JagTag. Sport England are encouraging as many people as possible to enjoy the benefits of being active, and we’re particularly interested in working with projects that can attract underrepresented groups in sport such as girls and women, young people with disabilities and those who face disadvantage.”
Gary Stannett – CEO of Active Communities Network said of the announcement.
“To have the weight of an NFL franchise behind such a brilliant community sport programme is fantastic for these young people. Jag Tag has had great success in engaging children to remain active during after school hours and ACN will deliver eight satellite programmes across London and Manchester free of charge to all participants whilst creating pathways to keep these children in the sport.”
Participants of the Jag Tag satellite programme will receive rewards and incentives, including eligibility for the 2019 Reward Rows programme which rewards 500 deserving children with tickets to the annual Jaguars game in London. 40 students from the programme will also be upskilled with sports leadership qualifications free of charge.
The programme will now be available in Manchester & London boroughs: Brent, Tower Hamlets and Westminster. Three satellite programmes are already running in London and Surrey. Interested participants should visit www.Jaguars.co.uk for more information.