Richard Huish College student, Callum Parsons is headed to Denmark in August to represent England as part of the Bristol City Cerebral Palsy Football team.
The teammates, who travel from across the Southwest to train together every Saturday, were invited to be part of the football festival after impressive performances at previous international tournaments held in Scotland and Ireland.
Callum’s cerebral palsy affects the mobility of his right arm, and he has been playing football since around the age of six. He explains “Because of my disability it was a bit tough to join a normal grassroots team, so my mum and dad looked around and I played for a few teams throughout those first few years”.
He became part of a Bridgwater team whose players have grown up alongside one another and now play for Bristol City CP FC. Speaking on their bond Callum commented, “I’ve made a lot of friends through football, the team feels like a family bond, I’ve known them most of my life, they are like my best mates, I do everything with them”.
At the end of 2019, the team Callum played for were struggling financially until a coach got in touch with Bristol City FC and the Football Foundation. Under the new title of Bristol City CP FC, and with the club’s investment, the team has gone from strength to strength.
Callum shared “The team has grown a lot over the past few years and there’s a lot more happening. Over the past season the coaches, parents, and whole team, have worked as a unit to promote the club. We’ve been on the BBC and one of my mates who’s joining Huish next year did a skydive and raised a few thousand pounds. Everyone’s been doing their part and now we’ve got a decent amount of money to do everything.
“Everyone does their part in the team, whether it’s the junior team, or the team I play in, the players, or the parents, they all do what they need to do to help the team and to make it all grow”.
After working hard at Huish for the past year completing a Level 2 Creative Pathway, Callum is now ready and excited to pursue a future in Sport. He is set to return in September to begin his Level 3 Extended Diploma in Sport, Exercise and Coaching, with an aspiration of a career in coaching.
“In an ideal world, I’d love to do something in football, obviously, my dream would be playing but because of my condition that’s pretty much not possible so I would love to do something within the sport like coaching”.
Callum has completed an online FA coaching qualification already and will have the opportunity to gain experience coaching the club’s Junior Team, and through his course at Huish.
As well as playing in Copenhagen, and starting a new course at Huish, Callum is preparing to learn to drive. He is eagerly awaiting his modified vehicle to arrive in the country so he can take on this next challenge.