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Disabled sports supporter’s charity chief awarded OBE

Fri 6th Jan 2012 | Football Governance

Joyce Cook, Chair of Level Playing Field (National Association of Disabled Supporters) has been awarded an OBE in the New Year’s Honours List for her services to disability sports. 

Level Playing Field is a UK charity representing disabled sports fans and providing guidance to football, cricket, rugby and other sports including the Olympics and Paralympics 2012.

Joyce is also the founder and Managing Director of CAFE, (Centre for Access to Football in Europe), which promotes and delivers inclusive football stadiums across Europe and ensuring that all can access the game. 

In addition, Joyce is a Board member at FARE (Football Against Racism in Europe) and sits on the board of The Football Association Disability Equality Advisory Group, Women In Football and Kick it Out’s Equality Advisory Group.  She has provided expert advice, consultation and representation to various sports and governmental bodies and sporting groups.

Joyce comments: “I am deeply honoured to have received an OBE but the award is really a reflection of the hard work shown by everyone at Level Playing Field and the Centre for Access to Football in Europe as well as our supporters and partners who are helping us change the landscape for disabled fans”.

Joyce is a disabled football fan herself and regularly travels to football matches across Europe.

Joyce added: “It is a team effort and while we have made a lot of progress we still have much to do before we can claim true inclusion and equal access for all disabled fans”.

David Bernstein, chairman of the FA said: “It is really great news and is more than deserved.  Joyce continues to be an inspiration”.

Joyce and CAFE will be working alongside UEFA EURO 2012 and the local organising committees in Poland & Ukraine to help ensure a more accessible experience for local and visiting disabled fans and tourists during the tournament. 

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