Harry Maguire, Manchester United captain, will kick-off the fundraising drive by offering the first of five money-can’t-buy prizes to be raffled each day next week.
Separately, a charity t-shirt, emblazoned with the slogan ‘United for the Heroes’, will go on pre-sale this week to raise money for the Foundation whilst paying tribute to the ‘Frontline Heroes’ of the Covid-19 crisis.
The twin initiatives are part of a new ‘Donate. Support. Unite.’ campaign to raise vital funds to enable the Foundation to expand its pandemic response across the UK and internationally, while continuing to meet elevated levels of need in local communities across Greater Manchester.
Over the past few weeks, Manchester United Foundation has committed £1 million to Covid-related initiatives, including working with the football club to provide 60,000 meals for NHS staff, donating money and activity packs to partner schools to support their pupils and families, and teaming up with worldwide Manchester United Supporters’ Clubs to support local youth charities in their own Covid campaigns.
The £1m of funds was raised at the Treble Reunion legends’ match, which took place at Old Trafford a year ago today, to celebrate 20 years since Manchester United won the coveted Treble in 1999.
The Foundation is now asking for the public’s support to help further increase the scale of its response and ensure that it can be sustained over the long-term, building on the ongoing support provided to the Foundation by Manchester United Football Club..
John Shiels, Chief Executive of Manchester United Foundation, said: “We’re extremely proud and thankful that money raised at our Treble Reunion match this time last year has been able to make such a difference to our local communities, and beyond, during these unprecedented times.
“Our commitment doesn’t stop there; we are now giving our fans the chance to get involved by raising even more money, which will be used to continue supporting our communities as we try to start getting back to normal. So many people will find the transition back to ‘normal life’ just as difficult as lockdown, but the Foundation will be there for them at every step.”
‘United for a High Five’ raffle
The ‘United for a High Five’ raffle focuses on the number five, as fans are encouraged to take just five minutes to donate at least £5 to be in with a chance of winning five prizes, donated by Manchester United players, legends and partners, released over five days.
The raffle will be kicked-off by Manchester United’s very own number five, Harry Maguire, as he offers the chance for one lucky fan to join him on a ‘Virtual Hangout’ to chat all things football.
Harry said: “I’m delighted to support this brilliant initiative by Manchester United Foundation, especially as it is centred around my own number five! The Foundation has done fantastic work so far during the pandemic and with the help of the fans we can continue to make a difference to those who need it most. Please donate what you can, and I look forward to seeing one of you online!”
The raffle will launch at 9am on Monday 1stJune across all Manchester United and Foundation online channels, with information on how to enter.
‘United for the Heroes’ t-shirt
The ‘United for the Heroes’ t-shirt will allow fans to declare their support for the ‘Frontline Heroes’ of the coronavirus pandemic whilst raising money for the Foundation.
The stylish t-shirt builds on United’s Frontline Heroes campaign to recognise key workers and volunteers who have saved lives and served their communities during the Covid crisis.
John Shiels said: “There are so many heroes working selflessly for others in response to the pandemic and this t-shirt is a great way for United fans to show their appreciation.
“The proceeds from this t-shirt will help Manchester United Foundation meet the growing need we see in each community in which we work, and honour the key workers and volunteers who are on the frontline of the crisis. We are grateful to the club for coming up with this great product and to everyone who buys it.”
The ‘United for the Heroes’ t-shirt will be available to pre-order from Thursday 28thMay for £20 via United Direct, and Manchester United will donate all proceeds from the sale of this product to Manchester United Foundation Charity No: 1118310.