Portsmouth’s care-experienced young people kicked off celebrations in style at a football match organised by a team of social care practitioners.

Supporting your futures week is a Portsmouth City Council initiative that recognises the achievements of care-experienced young people, encouraging them to learn new skills and form friendships.

The football match is part of a series of activities across the week that ends with music and entertainment at the top of Spinnaker Tower.

Councillor Suzy Horton, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Children, Families and Education at Portsmouth City Council said:

“It was a pleasure to meet everyone before kick-off and to speak with team members who organised the activity. They are passionate about giving their young people the very best opportunities in life, ensuring they have fun and make friends along the way.

“Our young people deserve the very best support as they move towards independence. This week helps them form friendships early in life and learn new skills. Football is a great way to work together and build connections.”

The football match was organised by a team of personal advisors which included Dan Sibley, who works in the supporting your futures team. Dan has played football since childhood and is a huge fan of the sport.

Dan said:

“I’m excited to be able to share a passion of mine with young people. Sport brings people together and helps promote health and wellbeing.

“Care-experienced young people deserve every opportunity to celebrate who they are in a safe and nurturing environment. While we give support throughout the year, weeks like this enables us to come together and do something special.”

Joe Afrifa who lives in Portsmouth and took part in the football match shared his views on the celebrations. Joe said:

“When my personal advisor told me about the football match, I was interested in coming along. It’s a good opportunity to meet new people that I haven’t played with before. I’m not sure I will become a professional footballer but it’s a hobby I really love and what to do more of.”

Supporting your futures week runs from 23 – 30 October for young people who are under the care of Portsmouth City Council children’s services. For more information on the week, visit www.strongerfutures.co.uk/yourfuture