ESC Clubrooms Appeal  

The project is at a stage where one further push for donations will enable us to start construction

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Welcome to both our existing members and families, as well as those of you who have decided to join our Club for the first time, as we prepare for another season of football, and strive to be the Club of choice in our area. We trust that your experience at our club will be an enjoyable one.

The footballing landscape that Ellerslie AFC operates within is changing rapidly, with more regulatory demands being imposed from our governing bodies such as coaching qualifications, training standards and facilities. A number of Clubs in our vicinity are attempting to position themselves as leaders in player development, resulting in the charging of high fees for players to participate. Other Clubs are discussing mergers or affiliations in an attempt to grow their player base to cover all playing levels, together with the required infrastructures, and to spread the resultant costs.

At Ellerslie, we have struggled over the past few years to retain some of our talented players as a consequence of the above changes, which is having a long term impact on the Club’s player development pathways. So in late 2019, your Executive Committee contracted a third party to undertake an initial survey, designed to seek your opinions on the Club’s strengths and weaknesses, in order to get some feedback on how to tackle these issues. We received a good response from the membership and are committed to implementing further regular feedback opportunities so that we can continue to target our resources into the most appropriate areas. A big thank you to those of you who took the time to give us feedback.

The survey results focussed on three main areas for improvement, being :

  1. Facilities :  The completion of the new Clubrooms/Amenities block, as a key driver for increased engagement with our membership, particularly the parents. Developed Design has been completed and we are now moving into Detailed Design for Building Consent, with our objective to start construction by Sept. 2020. We have had further success with our fundraising from Charitable Trusts over the balance of 2019, but still require further monetary support from our membership (approx.. $275,000) in order for the construction button to be pushed. Please refer to the website for details on how you can help.
  2. Communications : A desire to see improved communications to our members, in order for you to better understand the programmes being offered within the Club, and the various expectations for participation therein. The Club will be seeking to address this in the weeks leading up to the season start, as well as throughout the year.
  3. Coaching Enhancements :  Targeted to both Player Development Pathways and Coach Development / Support.  With the concerted input from our current Coaching Team, your Executive Committee has formulated, and will now implement a Long Term Phased Plan for Talent Development, focussing on Player Retention, Talent Development Programmes and a range of Coaching initiatives at both Grassroots and Premier levels, including workshops, on field input and mentoring opportunities. These initiatives will be implemented progressively over the next 3 years, and will allow us to navigate these new regulations at our own pace, whilst being able to amend our approach as the landscape changes further. We will be communicating more detail on these changes in our coaching structures to you all over the coming weeks.

In implementing these desired changes  as identified through this first survey process, your Executive Committee is very mindful of the need to maintain, and further enhance the “ Community Feel “ that currently exists within our Club. This is our Club’s real point of difference.  We will continue to strive to find a balance between imposing additional financial burdens on our diverse membership whilst meeting many members’ service expectations, not an easy task as you can imagine.

As has been documented in our current Strategic Plan, the Club wants to grow and develop its service offerings to its membership, but it must do so in a sustainable manner, taking into account the wishes of, and resources available to its entire membership.

In conclusion, a thank you to our various Committee members for their respective time and energies, to our Sponsors and Charitable Trusts that provide much needed financial support, and to our various members/parents that give freely of their time to ensure that Ellerslie teams are visible in all competitions.

May I wish you all the best as you participate, support and succeed across the football fields of Auckland, under the red, black and gold colours of Ellerslie Football Club.


Kind regards,


Mark B. Weipers


January 2020