Canada Soccer has launched a new era of development for the sport with the introduction of its Club Licensing Program across Canada. The program is designed to raise the standards of soccer development across the country to improve the overall soccer system and guide soccer organizations toward best principles for organizational development both on and off the field.
The Canada Soccer Club Licensing Program takes a principles-based approach which allows organizations to develop and select the methods by which they operate based on their available resources and unique situation and context. Developed in collaboration with Provincial and Territorial Association members, and incorporating international best practices, the program will set clearly defined standards and expectations for member organizations, recognize excellence in the soccer community, raise the level of clubs, and drive change within the soccer system throughout Canada.
“As Canada’s largest team sport by participation, we have a responsibility to deliver programming that benefits all players, but specifically children,” said Peter Montopoli, Canada Soccer General Secretary. “Through the work of the Development team, in collaboration with our partners in the provinces, territories and regions across Canada, an evidence-based program has been developed with interests of the child put first. We are extremely proud to be delivering this program through our partners and we look forward to seeing its results through the enjoyment of the youth players, but also by the impact it will have on players’ long-term development and love of the game.”
The Soccer Club
Within the Canada Soccer Club Licensing Program, the soccer club is defined as being any organization that is a member of Canada Soccer either directly or affiliated through membership with a PTSO that registers players and coaches and delivers soccer programming. The status of the organization as either not-for-profit or private is not relevant to the eligibility for inclusion in the
Club Licensing Program, which is open to traditional not-for-profit soccer clubs, private academies, and any other soccer organization in membership.
The Canada Soccer Club Licensing Program is designed to guide member organizations throughout the country toward best principles for organizational development both on and off the field. By raising the standards of member organizations, both the daily playing environment and participant experience are enhanced; thereby improving the overall soccer system in Canada.
The primary goals of the Canada Soccer Club Licensing Program are to:
- Set clearly defined standards and expectations for member organizations;
- Recognize excellence in the soccer community;
- Raise the level of all soccer organizations throughout Canada; and,
- Drive change in the soccer system.
To achieve these goals, the Canada Soccer Club Licensing Program takes a principles-based approach. Principles provide direction but not detailed prescription, allowing organizations to develop and select the methods by which they will operate based on their available resources and unique situation and context.
The principles of the Canada Soccer Club Licensing Program are grounded in the values being established for the Canadian soccer community to guide the behaviour of all organizations and can be utilized to inform choices, establish impacts, and drive outcomes. The Canada Soccer Club Licensing Program Principles are as follows:
- Prioritize Fun
- Emphasize Physical, Mental, and Emotional Safety
- Provide Developmentally-Appropriate, High Quality Programs
- Maximize Attraction, Holistic Personal Development, Progression, and Long-Term Engagement
- Focus on Participant-Centred Decision Making
- Foster Accessible, Inclusive, and Welcome Environments
- Act as a Good Corporate and Community Citizen
Soccer Nova Scotia Implementation
Currently Canada Soccer have clear outlines of two of the four classifications:
- Standards for Quality Soccer (entry level)
- National Youth Club Standards (highest level)There will be an additional two levels in between for clubs to aspire and develop towards:
- PTSO Youth Club License 1
- PTSO Youth Club License 2
In addition, Soccer Nova Scotia will start to release documents in a strategic manner to assist with understanding the program and its implementation.
For more information, or to arrange an interview on the subject of the Canada Soccer Club Licensing Program, please contact Mike Whyatt, Soccer Nova Scotia, Director of Soccer Development at firstname.lastname@example.org.