Northern NSW Football (NNSWF) is proud to announce that Newcastle Jets player Kaine Sheppard will be the inaugural presenter of its online Newcastle Permanent Volunteer Masterclass series.
A number of free workshops scheduled for this year had to be cancelled due to the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. So NNSWF and Newcastle Permanent, our major partner of community football, took the opportunity to move the Volunteer Masterclass series online.
Sheppard, who joined the Jets ahead of the 2018-19 season and has gone on to make 28 A-League appearances, will lead his virtual session on Tuesday, 19 May.
The session will focus on the Kaine Sheppard Foundation. In particular, how to create an opportunity for children with autism to enjoy football in a safe, friendly and inclusive environment.
Sheppard was born in England and started his career with Leyton Orient. He took up an opportunity to play professionally in Finland’s Veikkausliiga with SJK before arriving in Australia to join Victorian NPL club Avondale FC.
After scoring 20 goals in 24 games for Avondale, Sheppard earned the opportunity to play A-League football when he signed for the Jets.
Sheppard started his own not-for-profit organisation, the KS Foundation, which helps children with autism to play and enjoy football.
Sheppard’s older brother, Jake who suffers from Autism, was his inspiration for starting the foundation and why he is so passionate about giving kids with autism an opportunity to experience football.
“Growing up with him and seeing him grow and evolve… just seeing how much he loved and enjoyed football and how much he got from it, I was quite excited to do something similar and give back,” Sheppard said.
NNSWF Head of Football Development Peter Haynes said he was delighted to have secured Sheppard as the first online Volunteer Masterclass series presenter.
“Kaine’s KS Foundation is very passionate about giving kids with autism an opportunity to experience football,” Haynes said.
“The KS Foundation was the first to host an Autism Sensory Room at an A-League match.
“Obviously Kaine is playing professional football and has a lot of information he can pass on it that regard. But more than that, here is a 26-year-old guy who in terms of his work with his foundation is an inspiration.
“I know our local club committees can learn a lot from his experiences.”
NNSWF plan to announce a number of additional workshops which will feature more reputable special guests from across the region, country and globe delivering sessions to help community volunteers improve their skills.
They are designed to be fun and practical where participants can engage and learn from mentors who have ample experience in their field.
What: Newcastle Permanent Volunteer Masterclass Series
Topic: KS Foundation – Creating an opportunity for children with autism to enjoy football in a safe, friendly and inclusive environment.
Who: Kaine Sheppard, Newcastle Jets
When: Tuesday, 19 May 2020
Time: 7.00pm AEST
Register: click here https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_nl66DFm9S8OVoJuXbsde_w
Registrations close: 5pm, Monday 18 May, 2020
Note: Places strictly limited to 90 participants. Link to Zoom webinar will be sent directly to registered attendees prior to the webinar.