Stevenage FC Foundation aims to make an active, healthy and positive life accessible to all
Stevenage FC Foundation have announced an ambitious new strategy for their work in the local community, providing a clear direction until 2024 that aims to make an active, healthy and positive life accessible to all.
The “Aspire – Empower – Thrive” strategy outlines four key areas in which the Foundation will work in partnership, using the power of sport and Stevenage Football Club to inspire our community, including:
- Healthy Habits: Creating opportunities for people to lead more active & healthier lives
- Aspire to Thrive: Providing chances for people to realise their potential through education & learning
- Places & Spaces: Growing the sense of community for everybody, from every background and in every place
- Our Boro: Connecting with our community to feel part of the Stevenage FC family
The strategy, which was launched to mark 10 years of the Foundation as a registered charity, was unveiled at a special event in the new 76 Lounge at The Lamex Stadium with guests including the Premier League, English Football League Trust, representatives from a number of key local organisations including Hertfordshire Police, Herts Sports Partnership, Stevenage Borough Council, Hertfordshire FA, Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce, North Herts College, Citizen’s Advice amongst others.
Stevenage FC Foundation Chief Executive, Joe Goude said “To be able to bring together so many wonderful partners and launch our new strategy, has been a fantastic showcase of the role the Foundation can play over the coming years. We have spent nearly a year working on this strategy, listening to key partners, participants, fans and other stakeholders to really understand the role we can play in our community.
“We learnt a tremendous amount about the different role we can play locally whilst the pandemic was at its peak. Rather than providing sport and physical activity sessions, we used the power of the Stevenage FC badge to give people something to be a part of and with that we were able to take our support directly to them. That type of approach will be a key feature of our work going forward.
“We have listened and one of the key things we have heard back from people is that they don’t really know what the Foundation is about, or in some cases the difference between the charity and the club. With this launch event and work we’ll be doing in the coming weeks and months, our aim is to ensure that people not only know who we are and what we are about, but also how they can be a part of what we’re trying to achieve”.
The event also saw BBC 3 Counties Radio and Stevenage FC matchday commentator, Steve Watkins, host a panel with local residents who have been involved in some of the Foundation’s work over recent years. Poppy Fletcher (Girls Development Centre), Duncan Ling (Get Set To Go), Hannah Marsh on behalf of Martin Clarke (Community Careline), Davey Jones (Kicks), Julie Jeffries (Schools) and Leon O’Brien (Employability) were joined by Stevenage FC Men’s 1st Team Manager, Alex Revell to talk about the importance of the Foundation’s work and the role it plays within the club as a whole.
Stevenage Football Club Chairman, Phil Wallace also commented “The last 18 months have taught us many things both on and off the pitch at this Club. We’ve always prided ourselves as a community club and see ourselves as part of the fabric of the local community.
“Our work around the Community Careline, saw us create some fantastic partnerships to be there for local residents and with this new strategy from our Foundation, we are clearly showing how we intend to continue that support to as many people as we can, as we all try to recover and rebuild during these coming months and years.
“Everyone at this club is committed to helping others in our community, providing opportunities to local people and creating a sustainable Club for generations to come”.
In the first twelve months, the Foundation will look to kick off the work they’ve outlined with some key goals, including:
- Work with Stevenage FC, Stevenage Borough Council and local grassroots clubs to identify sites for a new football hub in the town
- Provide over 1,500 hours of physical activity opportunities to older adults
- Employing 20+ local young people as part of the Government Kickstart scheme
- Create a Boro Youth Board to shape their work to engage with new and existing fans
- Pilot a youth engagement mentor programme in a local secondary school to tackle anti-social behaviour and support students at risk of exclusion
- Launch an Extra Time Hub as a legacy project for the Coronavirus Community Careline