Meet our Morton Girls Project Worker, Laura Williamson. Laura’s first anniversary with Morton in the Community has come and gone in a flash. We’ve taken the opportunity to have a short question and answer session with Laura, reflecting on the last year and a look back at Laura’s journey with the beautiful game.
The voyage began for Laura with her dad buying her a Dundee kit, admittedly she didn’t become a Dundee fan.
Laura commented: “I just always kicked a ball about. When I was young there wasn’t much opportunity to play in teams so it was playing football in the playground, on the streets and in parks with the boys. Jumpers for goals.”
Laura’s first team was GFC St Johnstone between the ages of 14 and 17 before moving to Stirling FC and onto Glasgow City nine years later, where she had her most success as a player. Winning leagues, cups and being involved in Champions League campaigns.
Whilst at Glasgow City Laura became involved in coaching aspiring young female football players.
Laura added: “I started with under 13s at 7 aside and worked with many age groups developing players through the academy. I wanted to progress as a coach so would watch other coaches’ sessions and scour the internet for information on any aspect of the game, always looking for new ideas and trying to impact players whilst expanding my own knowledge.”
Q: What is your proudest moment in football and why?
A: Tough one, I have had ones that mean different things to me. As a coach seeing players I’ve coached working through their academies, getting into first teams and national squads. Also, as a coach, seeing players taking advice and it transferring it into their game and seeing them develop.
Q: Who inspired you to get involved in football and what was the most important lesson you learned that you can share with Morton Girls?
A: My dad when he got me my first strip, and just playing with the boys and being able to compete.
The most important thing I have learned from playing and coaching is setting standards and making sure you do your best in any situation and absorb as much information you can.
Q: What do you love most about your job?
A: I love seeing kids playing football and enjoying it. Seeing development in players and how they are progressing. Watching coaches develop within themselves and grow on the pitch.
Q: One year from now what do you hope to have achieved personally and with Morton Girls?
A: I want there to be more participation centres throughout the area and numbers increasing across the board. More girls into teams and playing the game. I want the first team to be growing as a squad and playing with a certain style of play and making a mark in the game. Personally I want to push on with my coach development and continue to develop in areas that can assist Morton Girls going forward.
Q: What are the benefits to engaging in our girls only centres?
A: The girls can come along and have a fun, enjoyable experience and get a taster of football. From there, there’s opportunities to progress into the Morton Girls pathway.
For more information and how to get involved: http://mortoncommunity.net/communityfootbal/girls-only
Q: How do you think the Scotland Woman’s National Team will fare at the upcoming European Championships?
A: I think it’s fantastic that they are there and will be amazing for them and all involved. I think they will go out there and do the country proud :). It will be a really exciting time and a great advert for the game.
Q: Describe Morton Girls in 5 words…
A: Fun, Team, Future, Hard Working, Believe
Laura balances her full time role with Morton Community with coaching at the West Regional girls programme with the under 16s and is the goalkeeping coach for under 16s girls national team.
Laura stated: “My journey in football has been an amazing experience with some fantastic opportunities and now I am doing a job I love. It doesn’t feel like work as I enjoy it so much.”
Participation in girls football is on the rise at Morton and much of this success is due to Laura’s tireless endeavours. We currently engage 64 girls aged 4-12 in girls only participation centres across Inverclyde. We engage 68 girls and 19 women in our Morton Girls and Senior community teams.
Contact Laura at 01475 731949 or firstname.lastname@example.org