McDonald’s awards launched

�/Lorcan Doherty Photography ''Bringing the McDonald's Irish FA Community Awards to Derry - local young footballers Christopher Colhoun (9), Kayla McDermott (9) and Jessica Nicholl (9) join (L-R) Geoff Wilson from the Irish FA, McDonald's ambassador Pat Jennings and Deputy Mayor, Alderman Gary Middleton at a special coaching event at St Columb's Park. ''Mandatory Credit Lorcan Doherty

�/Lorcan Doherty Photography ''Bringing the McDonald's Irish FA Community Awards to Derry - local young footballers Christopher Colhoun (9), Kayla McDermott (9) and Jessica Nicholl (9) join (L-R) Geoff Wilson from the Irish FA, McDonald's ambassador Pat Jennings and Deputy Mayor, Alderman Gary Middleton at a special coaching event at St Columb's Park. ''Mandatory Credit Lorcan Doherty

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GOALKEEPING legend Pat Jennings made a special visit to St Columb’s Park this week to officially launch the 2013 McDonald’s Irish FA Community Awards, which will take place in Derry for the first time in September.

Pat, McDonald’s Head of Northern Ireland football, joined Deputy Mayor Alderman Gary Middleton and over 100 local school children at a special event in the local park to celebrate the launch of the awards, which will take place in the Millennium Forum on September 27.

In recognition of the event coming to the city, pupils from Drumahoe PS, Chapel Road PS and Ebrington PS took part in a coaching event organised by the Irish FA.

Speaking at the event, Pat said: “On behalf of McDonald’s, I’m delighted to announce that the 2013 Community Awards will be held in Derry in September. The event is one of the highlights in our local football calendar and it’s great to be able to bring it to the city. I’m looking forward to attending the awards and I wish everyone who’s been nominated the very best of luck.”

Deputy Mayor Alderman Gary Middleton said: “It is a great pleasure to welcome this event to the city both in terms of the opportunity that it provides for our young sports people of the future and for the value that it adds within the city to host this celebrated event. What is significant about the McDonald’s Irish FA Community Awards is their recognition of people who are carrying out great work in local sporting communities and the fact that the nominations are made by the public make the acknowledgment extremely worthy. We look forward to extending a warm welcome to all involved here to the UK City of Culture in September.”

Geoff Wilson, Head of Marketing and Communications at the Irish FA added: “The McDonald’s Irish FA Community Awards were launched three years ago and every year they have continued to grow in stature. It is really important that we recognise the volunteers in our game throughout Northern Ireland. The Association is delighted to bring the awards event to Derry City this year as part of the ‘City of Culture’ programme.”

To find out more about the programme or to vote in the Awards, please visit www.mcdonalds.co.uk/kickstart