Six EFL clubs will be recognised and celebrated at Parliament for their outstanding work in the community.
As regional winners of the Checkatrade Community Club of the Year, six of the EFL’s 72 clubs were selected for innovative and groundbreaking work across inclusion, community engagement, education and health.
The 2018 winners being honoured are listed below, alongside details of their showcase community projects.
Yorkshire & North East – Middlesbrough
Stepping Up – a school based programme to prepare children for the social and emotional aspects of moving from primary school to secondary.
North West – Blackburn Rovers
Social Inclusion Football League – a unique competition designed for people with requirements in mental health, substance misuse, social isolation and homelessness.
Midlands – Derby County
Rams in Kenya – aiding education, development and sustainability for hundreds of children at St Trizah, Ungana and Jubilee schools in Nakuru, Kenya.
London – Charlton Athletic
Charlton Athletic Community Trust Invicta FC - the first professional football club trust in the UK to establish and launch a dedicated LGBT-friendly football team
South East – Portsmouth
Wheels for All – an inclusive community cycling scheme that offers adapted bikes and personal support to local adults and children with physical and learning disabilities.
South West – Bristol City
Youth Council – the club worked with young people from various communities to create a youth council to design and deliver community engagement programmes for people in the region.
The six clubs will be honoured on Monday 12th March in the House of Commons as the best performing Club Community Trusts in the country, with EFL Chairman Ian Lenagan, Sports Minister Tracey Crouch and host Colin Murray all taking to the stage at the ceremony.
The overall winner of the 2018 Checkatrade Community Club of the Year Award will be announced at the EFL Awards on Sunday 15th April in central London.
EFL Chief Executive, Shaun Harvey, said: “EFL clubs are based in the heart of communities up and down the country, often in some of the most disadvantaged areas. It’s important that we recognise the clubs that have gone that extra mile to make a real difference to the community they represent, which is why the announcement of the Checkatrade Community Club of the Year regional winners is a fitting tribute to the excellent and innovative work that takes place.
“I’m proud to say that all clubs, not just the winners, are at the forefront of helping to tackle some of the biggest issues in society by using the power of the club badge.
“In 2018 we celebrate 10 years of the EFL Trust and, in the past decade, our clubs have played an instrumental part in transforming their local community, from helping to reduce crime, improving health and inspiring education. Hundreds of thousands of people have been, and will continue to be, positively influenced by the work undertaken in this area seven days a week, 365 days a year.”
The EFL received strong submissions from a wide range of clubs with the panel marking the applications on social impact and their showcase projects.
The six regional winners were selected by an independent judging panel including The Times’ Chief Football Writer, Henry Winter, Team Leader for Faith Engagement, Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government, Hilary Patel, Director of CSR at The PFA, John Hudson, Sky Sports’ Michael Weightman and the EFL Trust Director of Operations, Mike Evans.