It’s the school holidays, the sun is out, and you’re playing football with your friends. Could it get any better? Well, only maybe if the Premier League Trophy was watching on. Which is exactly what happened to a group of schoolkids in Manchester last week.
As part of our Premier League Trophy Tour,
“We’re about giving young people a chance to enjoy sport, despite the inequalities they face from the postcode they live in,” says Josh Saydraouten, StreetGames Programmes Manager. “For us it’s about giving them experiences like this, taking them to places they wouldn’t normally get to go to. It’s invaluable.”
StreetGames’ mission is to make sport, and its many benefits, accessible to all young people across the UK.
Watching on was Claire Wilson, who works with StreetGames to help facilitate relationships such as these. “My role is working within the communities and providing some of the glue that brings people together in partnership,” she explains. “Mike Edwards, founder of Manchester Young Champs, is one of our longstanding locally trusted partners. He delivers a lot of football in the Manchester area, and does a lot of work with Manchester City Football Club.
“A lot of the young people on his programme volunteer at the club on matchdays and get their kit and various other things for free as a thank you. I work to help Mike pull all of that together and ensure that he’s being sustainable so that he can develop things further.”
Whether its cookery, sport, art or music, StreetGames uses these platforms as tools to engage and support children and young people in poverty. You can probably guess that the Premier League Trophy proved useful in helping achieve that.
“I think it gives them a great sense of purpose,” says Manchester Young Champs Founder Mike, when asked about the impact of the trophy’s presence. “These kids have never been close to the trophy before. It being here puts them somewhere on the periphery of the glory and the glitz and glamour of top-class football. They live and breathe football. It will stay with them for the rest of their lives.”
We’re sure they’re now even hungrier to lift it for real one day.
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