March 23 – With the UK in the grip of the spread of the Coronavirus, Premier League clubs are launching a series of initiatives to provide support in the their home cities.
It is a crisis that has brought Manchester’s two rivals to come together to donate a combined £100,000 to help food banks in Greater Manchester to meet the increased demand from vulnerable people.
The cooperation between the MCFC and MUFC Fans’ Foodbanks with a fundrainsing appeal which the clubs quickly backed each with a £50,000 to the Trussell Trust. The Trussell Trust supports a network of over 1,200 food bank centres, including 19 in the Greater Manchester area which will be the beneficiaries of this donation.
Both the MCFC Fans Foodbank Support and MUFC Fans Foodbank usually collect supplies outside Old Trafford and The Etihad before home games but those collections have obviously been interrupted with the postponement of matches due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
In a joint statement, Manchester City and Manchester United said: “We are proud of the role our supporters play in helping local food banks and recognise the increased strain likely to be placed on these charities by the impact of coronavirus. At a time of challenge for our community, we are pleased to come together with our fans to help vulnerable members of society in a City United.”
Everton launch ‘Blue Family’
Meanwhile on Merseyside Everton and its official charity have aunched ‘Blue Family’, a campaign to provide vital support and assistance to some of the most vulnerable, socially isolated and at-risk members of the community.
Everton is providing £50,000 to fund the launch and initial activities and will see club and community staff re-tasked to deliver a number of initiatives including:
- Fans and members of the community in greatest need contacted by Everton in the Community staff to deliver tailored and focused support, assistance and guidance, including:
- Essential food parcels distribution, including breakfast packs for young children
- Financial assistance for prescription purchases and delivery
- Mobile phone credit for those living alone and with limited support networks
- Support with gas and/or electricity vouchers for those facing increased fuel bills
- Mental health support and advice
- A referral service for access to Everton in the Community’s support provision
- Calls from the Everton Fan Centre to thousands of fans to maintain contact and provide a friendly voice to talk to, prioritising the elderly and isolated
- Increased communication through the Club’s email, social media and web platforms to share important public information and deliver engaging content for those in isolation
- Exercise and mindfulness videos provided by trained staff from the Club and Everton in the Community
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