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EFL: Clubs help to spread the Christmas cheer

22 December 2016

EFL clubs may be preparing for the busy Christmas period on the field but, off it, they have been spreading festive cheer in their local communities.

From hospital visits to charitable donations, we’ve picked out a few highlights of the EFL clubs’ good work in the build-up to the big day.

Wolverhampton Wanderers made a life-changing donation to a young fan who they met when she was a mascot earlier this season.

Jessie-Leigh Smith suffers from Cerebral Palsy and is in need of an operation costing £16,000. The youngster, who walked out with the team at Molineux ahead of their fixture with Barnsley is September, had already raised half of her fundraising target.

Paul Lambert’s men were so inspired by her story, they decided to help her family reach their goal by donating £8,000.

QPR made a visit to young people close to their club – next door in fact!

Jamie Mackie, Yeni Ngbakoto and Karl Henry joined manager Ian Holloway in paying a visit to Jack Tizard School, a school for children with severe learning difficulties.

Read more - QPR: Squad spread festive cheer

Philippe Montanier and his merry men from Nottingham Forest dropped in at Queen’s Medical Centre to help put a smile on some young fans’ faces.

Henri Lansbury, Britt Assombalonga and Ben Osborn were among a number of players involved in the visit and it’s something that means a lot to Forest front man Assombalonga.

🎥 #NFFC players and Philippe Montanier spread some Christmas cheer at the Queen’s Medical Centre yesterday.

— Nottingham Forest FC (@NFFC) December 21, 2016
Sky Bet League One side Gillingham were at Medway hospital to hand out gifts and even give a rendition of a popular Christmas tune.

Jay Emmanuel-Thomas, Cody McDonald, Scott Wagstaff and Mark Byrne accompanied assistant manager David Kerslake to hand out gifts to patients aged three to 15.

The visit by the Gills has become an annual event to meet patients, their families and hospital nurses, and the squad completed their short stay by belting out ‘We Wish You a Merry Christmas’ to all in attendance.

CLUB: The #Gills first-team squad today visited Medway Hospital to spread some festive cheer among child patients.

— Gillingham FC (@TheGillsFC) December 19, 2016
Bolton Wanderers split their visits across three places this Christmas. Players and staff dropped in at Royal Bolton Hospital Children’s ward, Derian House Children’s Hospice and Bolton Hospice as they attempted to put a smile on as many faces as possible.

Patients who were part of each visit got a chance to meet some of their favourite Trotters stars with Zach Clough, Sammy Ameobi, Jay Spearing and Josh Vela amongst those making an appearance.

But it was defender David Wheater who perhaps made the most special visit…

Port Vale’s first-team squad visited Stoke Royal Hospital armed with mountains of gifts for the youngsters and fans throughout the wards.

Exeter City players took time out from their Christmas training schedule to visit the Bramble Ward at Royal Devon & Exeter hospital.

The Sky Bet League Two side were joined on their visit by club mascot Grecian the Lion and one youngster on the ward took the time to show goalkeeper Bobby Olejnik through his football sticker album.

Mansfield Town were another Sky Bet League Two side to make an appearance at their local Hospital. They visited the children’s ward at King’s Mill hospital.

Striker Pat Hoban, goalkeeper Scott Shearer, defenders Rhys Bennett and Mal Benning, midfielder Chris Clements and striker Darius Henderson were among those giving gifts to patients and staff on the ward.

Thank you @mansfieldtownfc for delivering gifts, hugs and xmas cheer to children and staff on ward 25 at King's Mill Hospital.🎄🎅🎁

— King's Mill & Newark (@SFHFT) December 15, 2016
The Jolly Green Giant appeared on Yeovil Hospital’s Children’s ward on Tuesday, and he was joined by Yeovil Town players and staff – yes, the giant is the Glovers’ mascot.

After visiting numerous wards, the squad donated any leftover gifts to the hospital to give out to those who unfortunately arrive in hospital over the coming days.

A huge thank you to @YTFC for the generous gifts they brought to our Children's Ward @YeovilHospital yesterday

— Yeovil Hospital (@YeovilHospital) December 21, 2016
The examples listed above are just a handful of the special visits EFL clubs have been making over the Christmas period. You can see more on our Facebook gallery, via the below link.

See more: Click here to see images from EFL club Christmas visits

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