Amateur FA Advisory Groups

Meet the Amateur FA Inclusion Advisory Group and Youth Advisory Group.

Inclusion Advisory Group

The IAG is key in promoting football for everyone and enables the Amateur FA to increase awareness, understanding and knowledge of inclusion, equality and diversity, so that we will better meet the needs of all our communities who take part in football and ultimately our business.

Youth Advisory Group

The YAG support the Amateur FA with their strategy and help grow young adult’s involvement in the game. They provide a voice for young adults involved in the amateur game and influence Amateur FA decision making.

If you are interested in joining the Inclusion Advisory Group or Youth Advisory Group, please email and a member of the team will get back to you.

Get in Touch

Visit our HELPDESK to find answers to our frequently answered questions, including safeguarding contact details.

If your query cannot be answered, please submit a ticket.

You can also visit the FA Grassroots Technology Forum for help with FA IT systems.

Inclusion advisory group

Charlotte Lawrence

Charlotte is the Strategy & Performance Manager within the Grassroots Division at The FA. Prior to this, Charlotte spent the previous decade working in Government across various departments, including the Home Office, The Cabinet Office and finally the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, where she spent five years as the Head of Sport Participation.  
Charlotte is the Chair of the IAG and is a passionate advocate for equality and inclusion. She hopes to use her role in the group to support the Amateur FA’s efforts in delivering football for all.
Charlotte has a huge passion for football and the important role it can play in delivering social good. She is a FA Level 1 coach and a regular player. Charlotte is a massive Arsenal fan and can regularly be found at the Emirates, Borehamwood and on the road, supporting both the men’s and women’s teams.

Neal Hickey

Neal is the Head of Participation and Development at Middlesex FA. In his role his main responsibilities are leading facility development & investment across Middlesex, overseeing women’s & girls’ football and managing and supporting the Participation & Development team.

In January of 2008 I started to volunteer with my local Special Olympics Club in Dublin, Ireland. I did that for a number of years before taking on a full time role with Special Olympics in the United States of America. In that role I was focused on increasing participation for athletes with an intellectual disability through local clubs and through Project Unify partnering disabled and non disabled athletes together in sporting competitions.

Since moving to London in 2017 I have worked with the Chelsea Foundation coaching disabled athletes, and coaching a women's club in my local community. I also work as a training consultant with Student Minds supporting staff in Higher Education to deliver mental health training to young people. I joined Honourable Artillery Company in a playing capacity before having to retire with lovely arthritis in my knee.

I am a big believer in the power that football has to support individuals and communities and similarly, to use community clubs as a vehicle for social inclusion. 

I am Vice-Chair of the IAG and hope to add value by helping and assisting where possible to ensure inclusion is at the heart of every club.

Natalie Graham

As a member of the Amateur FA Inclusion Advisory Group Natalie is on hand to offer her passion, knowledge and aspirations for D&I in a sport she loves, because she believes that football should truly be accessible to all at the grass roots level and beyond. She is committed to doing all she can to help achieve this.  Natalie admits that, as a member of this unique forum, she also takes the opportunity to share her ‘expertise’ on the intricacies of the beautiful game whenever she can!
Natalie is a devoted Gooner, likes to travel and is an enthusiastic foodie. Natalie is currently studying for an International Sports Management MSc at UCFB.


Beyz is Chairman of London Romans Football Club. He took the role of Committee Member and Manager of the team which started in 2006. The team plays in the London Unity Football League.

The main aims of the team are to promote inclusivity within football and to promote the FA's campaigns to kick racism and homophobia out of football.

In his professional life, Beyz works as a barrister in London specialising in employment law and civil litigation, and is a part-time Employment Tribunal Judge and magistrate.

He is fully committed to the aims and objectives of the Amateur FA IAG and he is a founding member.

Brian Silk

- Player for Leftfooters FC, Stonewall FC and Bexley Invicta FC
- Director of Registration for the IGLFA World Championships 2008 in London
- Founder of Bexley Invicta FC (now Charlton Invicta FC) and Chair, 2011 to 2015
- Vice Chair, Kent Equality Advisory Group, 2011 to 2019
- Chair of the London Unity League, 2017 to present
- Community Liaison Officer for Erith Town FC, 2022 to present


Cara Pears - Inclusion Advisory Group member

Cara has worked and volunteered using sport for change, with a focus on young people and disabled people’s experiences in the UK, Caribbean, Portugal, and Brazil over the past 15 years. She firmly believes in the way sport can help to build communities, offer development opportunities for everyone involved, and provide space to everyone as a common physical language for universal engagement. Cara grew up as a keen football player and fan, and is excited to bring her lived experience and professional knowledge to the role in the board.

Cara currently works as Interim Head of Strategy, Evidence and Insight at Scope, a charity based in England and Wales working towards Everyday Equality for Disabled people.

Sak Rafique

Sak Rafique is the founder and lead mental fitness coach at ORANGE BALL. He has over 20 years of experience supporting individuals and teams as a mental fitness performance and leadership coach.
He is an accredited Level 7 Executive Coach and Mentor and an Applied Positive Psychology and Coaching Psychology practitioner.
Sak is currently delivering his mental fitness coaching programmes on behalf of Middlesex FA and is a member of the expert affiliate panel at The Surrey Football Coaches Association. 
He is passionate about education, inclusion, equity and supporting individuals and groups to cultivate mental fitness. 

youth advisory group

I’m the current Chair of the Youth Advisory Group. I have been part of the group since its formation in late 2020. I’m involved in Amateur FA football as a Level 4 referee, operating on the contributory and supply leagues (Steps 3-6 of the non-league system). 

In my day-to-day life I work in project procurement and it is my aim to get the YAG working just like a project team would, producing quality outputs that positively contribute to the game we love.

I am Vice-Chair of the Youth Advisory Group. Growing up I was constantly playing football, at many levels. I have seen how amazing it can be, but also its shortcomings. Now that I am older, I feel a responsibility to give back to future generations to come, to improve the game that I love so much and hope that new up and coming players can have the same, if not greater, opportunities that I had. 

Outside of the YAG, I am currently working at Six Nations Rugby as a People Administrator and a football fan. However, I am hoping to re-enter coaching soon and continue along with my coaching badges.

I have been involved in football since the age of 5, be it playing, watching, coaching, stewarding, first aiding, scouting, recruiting or refereeing. I work for Concentrix, providing tech customer support. Additionally, I am doing some security work for G4S, Manchester City FC, Leeds United FC, etc, plus working at Huddersfield Town FC as a first aid and stretcher bearer. The Youth Advisory Group role appealed to me because of my love for the game and desire to work in the sector as a full-time career.

Football is a great passion of mine. I currently work as a Football Data Journalist for SportRadar, whilst also being a voluntary scout for a football agency. I spent years playing football at grassroots level and cherish those memories. I also have experience coaching and spent my time at college studying the discipline.

I am a member of the Group because I am passionate to discuss and work with likeminded people from different backgrounds about how we can make changes to the beautiful game.

I am currently working in the commercial team at Sky Sports. I studied Law with Criminology at the University of Kent. I joined the Youth Advisory Group because I want to encourage younger women to take part in grassroots football and ensure that there is a safe space for them to participate.

I have been involved in football since I was 4 years old and I work as a football coach for Bromley Football Club where I am also a student, with aspirations of becoming a coach at the professional level. I am a member of the Youth Advisory Group as I am excited by improving and developing the game.

I am a second year Sport and Exercise Science university student with a passion for sporting equality. Sport is something I have been involved in from a very young age and believe that football should be a place where every individual is able to feel safe and express themselves freely, from a grass roots level and onwards, which influenced me to apply for the YAG. I am a keen supporter of the Arsenal Women’s’ and Men’s’ teams and seeing the progression of female football in recent times is something I follow closely and am committed to helping further progress in future.

I am a third-year university student studying Arabic and International Business and joined the Youth Advisory Group to help make a positive impact in the footballing world.


I am a qualified football coach. I coach individuals from a range of age groups, starting from the age of 3 up to those aged 16+. I also play for my local women's 5-a-side team on a weekly basis (which helps to keep my fitness up!

I am a student studying Natural Sciences at Nottingham University. I volunteered at the Women’s Euros over the summer and it was such an amazing experience; so that is why I was keen to continue being part of the game. I play football for a Sunday league team as part of the women’s football club at my university, which I find lots of fun, without any pressure.