Bolton Wanderers fans will have the chance to learn more about the charitable work of Emmaus communities in the UK at a special Sky Bet League One match at the Toughsheet Community Stadium on Saturday 16 December.
Wanderers’ Principal Partner, Victorian Plumbing, selected Emmaus UK as their charity of the year and for the upcoming fixture, will hand over their usual matchday branding assets to the homelessness charity.
Emmaus’ logo will feature across the stadia screens, LEDs and matchday programme, and the charity’s local Bolton branch will have a presence at the stadium’s Wellbeing Hub, where visitors will be able to take part in family games, including a snowball toss, giant Jenga and buzz wire, as well as a raffle.
Supporters will also be able to make a donation to Emmaus Bolton and Emmaus UK on the day.
Emmaus Bolton is one of 30 Emmaus charities which form part of Emmaus UK and together support more than 850 people with experience of homelessness, providing a home, support and meaningful work in social enterprises.
In Bolton, this involves the sale of donated and upcycled goods and furniture-made at the charity’s shops off Fletcher Street.
The fixture marks the start of an exciting new partnership between the local Emmaus homelessness charity and the Club’s official charity, Bolton Wanderers in the Community.
Director of Emmaus Bolton, Tony Stephenson, said: “We are grateful to Bolton Wanderers in the Community for providing this opportunity for Emmaus to share what fans can do to help.
“Emmaus Bolton provides a home for people who have been homeless and a food bank for people in need. Thanks to the supporters of the Club’s charity who have already been busy collecting basic essentials that we can share with local families in need.”
Christmas can be a difficult time for people as household bills are on the rise, the cost of food is going up and relationships can take the strain. Across England there has been a 6.8% increase in the number of households threatened with homelessness, or who are already homeless in England. According to the latest Government figures, Bolton has seen the biggest increase of all ten boroughs in Greater Manchester.
Tony added: “Thank you to Bolton Wanderers in the Community for helping to raise awareness, not just of what Emmaus Bolton is doing locally but what other Emmaus communities are doing across the UK to help people rebuild lives from homelessness and social isolation. We hope Bolton and away fans coming from across the country take what they’ve learned home, so they can support their local Emmaus community.”
Deputy CEO of Bolton Wanderers in the Community, Ben Lawton, said: “We are thrilled to be working alongside Emmaus Bolton in a collaborative effort to make a lasting impact on the lives of individuals in our community.
“Football has the power to bring people together, and by joining forces with Emmaus Bolton, we can extend our reach and support to those who need it the most. Together, we aim to create positive change and inspire others to get involved in community initiatives.
“We’d also like to thank Victorian Plumbing for providing the platform for the initiative, which will help support Lucie’s Pantry and the wonderful work of Emmaus Bolton.”
The national homelessness charity Emmaus UK was also put forward by Victorian Plumbing for Bolton Wanderers’ third shirt to help raise awareness of the work the charity does across England, Wales and Scotland
People at the match will be able to donate to Emmaus Bolton and Emmaus UK at contactless donations points throughout the ground, with volunteers from Suez and Bolton College assisting on the day.
You can donate to Emmaus Bolton here.