Outstanding Portsmouth Receive Top Recognition
Portsmouth have been named and recognised as one of six EFL clubs that will receive Parliamentary praise this week owing to their innovative and ground breaking community work.
All six clubs were regional winners of the 2018 EFL Community Club of the Year award and with 72 clubs in the hat, taking the prize is an achievement in itself, but each club won out owing to their work across inclusion, community engagement, education and health.
Full winners list:
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
All six clubs will be honoured for their work on Monday March 12 in the House of Commons as the best performing Club Community Trusts across the country and EFL Chairman Ian Lenagan, Sports Minister Tracey Crouch and Channel 5 host Colin Murray will all be taking to the stage at the ceremony.
With each clubs listed as a divisional winner, the overall winner will be announced at the EFL Awards on Sunday April 15 in central London.
Speaking to the efl.com chief executive Shaun Harvey explained.
'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.'
2018 also sees the ten year anniversary of the EFL Trust initiative and he went on to explain.
'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.'
Having received strong recommendations about the work being done within Trusts, the six regional winners were selected by a 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.