This article outlines one of the most vital parts of the process - how the participant actually books onto a session! Confirming a place on a Wildcats, Just Play or Age UK Walking Football session is when it really gets exciting for a player, so the process of doing so on the FA Events Platform has been made as seamless as possible.
From a Wildcats perspective, the parent/guardian will have to do the booking for the youth because participants will be under 16. For Just Play and Age UK Walking Football bookings, the process is very similar - however, you might not have to rely on someone else doing it for you!
This video walks through the process of booking onto a session. There is written guidance below if you prefer.
To book onto a session as a participant, you will need to go to the official FA website - theFA.com - and navigate to the Find Football Near You search tool. This should be further down on the homepage.
Enter the information in the boxes, such as your home postcode or the club name that you want to join, the type of football you want to play, whether it's male/female/disability, and your age. Then hit 'Find Football'.
Depending what you have filled in, this should then bring up all the relevant information about the football you want to play and the places where you can attend sessions. You can edit anything down the left hand side to refine your search further if needs be, and you also have the option to do another search at the top.
When you've selected the right provider for you, it will bring up all the details about the provider and its sessions that are taking place in the future. This includes venue, contact details of the coach, along with information about the session and what it's like. There will be a 'Book' button to press - and if you're interested, go for it!
Once you've clicked on the booking link, that's when you'll be transferred over to the FA Events Platform. Here is where you will need to log in or create an FA account if you don't already have one. You also have the ability to share the page with a parent or guardian. For Just Play sessions, you need to be at least 16 years of age and for Age UK Walking Football, you need to be 50 years young.
For anyone wanting to book onto Wildcats, you will follow the same process as above but obviously filter your earlier search to Wildcats. Then, you will be presented with a page that looks like the one below.
In this situation, since Wildcats are set to the ages of 5-11, the parent will need to create an account or log in using their own FAN number. There is the option to create new FAN numbers by doing this. The system will then allow the parent or guardian to select the child they wish to book onto sessions. If their child/youth is not visible, they will need to contact their County FA.
The rest of this article is the same booking process for Wildcats, Just Play, Just Play For Students and Age UK Walking Football - the only difference is the background pictures on the login page!
But, going back to the example of using Just Play - once logged in or after creating an account, you will get to the booking screen. Simply book yourself in by selecting 'Book' - and if necessary, 'Book a Youth'.
After pressing 'Book', the FA Events Platform will automatically pre-select every session available for you on this centre. It is your responsibility to pick and choose - via ticking or un-ticking - which sessions you can and cannot attend. Take note of the information at the top, and use the 'Un-select All' button to un-tick all the sessions on the list so you can then go through and choose the ones you want to come to. Once appropriately ticked or un-ticked, click 'Next' at the bottom.
You now have to fill in any emergency contact details, medical conditions and accessibility requirements you may need before, during or after the sessions that the organisers must know of as these will appear on their registers. Be assured that none of these details will be visible publicly as the site is fully G.D.P.R compliant. Complete this and you're nearly there!
And that's it! Once all your details have been filled out, simply press 'Confirm' if you're happy and ready to play some football! If you need to go back and change anything, the 'Edit' button is there for you too. Then, when you log on to the FA Events Platform next time, you will be able to see a list of all your 'Current Sessions' on your session list for the provider!
Please note: There is no obligation to attend or pay for the event during the booking process via the FA Events Platform. The organiser will get the opportunity to mark who has actually attended later on and they will process the payments themselves.