Charter Standard

The FA Charter Standard programme is a kitemark, which recognises and rewards high quality levels of provision in club football. The kitemark is awarded to clubs that are well run, sustainable, which place child protection, quality coaching and safety paramount. The FA Charter Standard kitemark was launched in 2001 and now has 4,500 clubs, with 460 advanced level Community Clubs. The kitemark is a major focus of The FA’s £200 million FA National Game Strategy and has improved coaching, the number of girls’ football teams and safeguarding children. There are three levels of FA Charter Standard Awards for clubs to recognise the different standards. The entry level is an ‘FA Charter Standard Club’, the next level is an ‘FA Charter Standard Development Club’ and the most advanced ‘FA Charter Standard Community Club’. Each advanced level requires additional criteria to be met.

Who Can Apply?

Any club can apply for FA Charter Standard status, even a one-team club. The criteria is challenging, but is attainable for every club. Once awarded, FA Charter Standard clubs are given an annual health check to ensure the standards of provision are maintained.

What Criteria Does Our Club Need?

Criteria for achieving the entry level award include having a trained Welfare Officer, CRB checks for all volunteers, Emergency Aid-trained volunteers linked to each team, Respect programme sign-up, a Level One coach for each youth team, appropriate club administration in place and a volunteer co-ordinator.

What Are The Benefits For Our Club?

The benefits for an FA Charter Standard club include free tickets upon application for England youth and women’s internationals, local in-service FA/McDonald’s coaching events, discount on coach education courses, administration support sessions, support with funding applications and access to more funding pots and development opportunities.

The ‘hidden’ benefits are key to most clubs working towards the kitemark. By achieving an FA Charter Standard Club Award, you are demonstrating to all members, parents, sponsors and the public, that you are a well-organised, safe Club offering opportunities for all.

How Does Our Club Apply?

To apply, clubs must complete an application form and return it to the County FA with the requested supporting evidence.  To access an application form please contact Lincolnshire County FA and express your interest in achieving the FA Charter Standard kitemark. The final application will be assessed by the County FA nominated officer. Feedback will be obtained from the leagues that your club plays in to ensure that your club displays the high levels expected of an FA Charter Standard Club.

The FA Charter Standard Working Party will provide feedback on each application, which will include an action plan and a recommendation. If your club meets the criteria, the County FA will forward your application to The FA for awarding. If your club does not meet the criteria, your County FA will provide an action plan and advice.

The kitemark lasts for one season and will be renewed each year as part of the club re-affiliation process; the renewal process each year will be completed through an Annual Health Check. Kitemark awards can be withdrawn if a club has a poor disciplinary record, fails to attend in-service FA Charter Standard events or is unable to continue to meet the criteria.  

Why An Annual Health Check?

To keep the FA Charter Standard Programme current and in line with the FA’s National Game Strategy criteria changes were introduced in July 2009.  It was also agreed that an Annual Health Check for FA Charter Standard Clubs be introduced for season 2010/11.  This replaced the three year renewal process and was introduced to reduce the number of instances when after three years clubs cannot meet the criteria and have to lose their accreditation amongst other benefits.

What Are The Benefits Of The Annual Health Check?

  • Annually inform clubs of their current status in relation to meeting the FA Charter Standard criteria
  • Support clubs in tracking the validity of their voluntary workforce in relation to coach education and welfare
  • Allow clubs to identify their workforce/coach education requirements for the season
  • Provide greater communication and support for clubs from the County FA
  • Provide clubs with online tools through Member Services
  • Provide consistent benefits annually to each club who completes the Health Check.

What Is An Annual Health Check?

In its simplest guise it is an annual form that each club has to complete and return to the County FA showing how it adheres to the FA Charter Standard criteria and plans to continue to meet the criteria during that season.  In its more effective form it will allow clubs to align coaches to their teams, show when their awards expire, identify the volunteer workforce within the club, access the welfare status of individuals within the club and allow the use of Member Services to assist club officials in administrating their club.

How Do I Complete Our Clubs Annual Health Check?

In the documents section below please find the ‘FA CHARTER STANDARD CLUBS’  literature which provides clubs with guidance on how to receive or generate their unique club Health Check form, and how to complete it correctly.  Lincolnshire County FA will be able to support you with all elements of the Health Check so please do contact them for further support and to receive a copy of your club Health Check form. 

Who Can I Talk To At The County FA?

For more information on the FA Charter Standard Programme, please contact Linzi Hewitt on 08449 67 07 08 (option 2) or alternatively e-mail

Annual Health Check Guidance

Lincolnshire FA 2018-19 Handbook
Whole Game System
Criminal Records Checks
Referee Registration
FA Licensed Coaches Club
Coaching Bursary
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