KILLARNEY Athletic AFC has been awarded the prestigious Clubmark Star Player Development Centre award by the Football Association of Ireland.
It is one of only 26 clubs in the country to receive the accolade and it followed entry level inclusion last year when the club was recognised for excellence in governance and administration.
The criteria for the Star Player Development was far more intense as the FAI now insists that the work that is carried out off the pitch is now is as important, if not more important, than on the field of play.
Factors taken into account when securing the award include policies, procedures, accountability, player welfare, risk assessment and child welfare.
Among the improvements made by Athletic officials were additional coach education and the implementation of development plans and club coaching structures.
There was also a requirement to develop our own club development plan based on the current FAI systems and it was essential that all ages were catered for.
“For us to have achieved this award was amazing,” said chairperson Ger Nagle.
“I have to say that it would not have been possible without the help and hard work of my daughter, Tara, and it also shows the dedication of everyone in the club,” she said.
“It was a massive learning experience on how to put structures in place to make it the best club of all,” Ger added.