Fred and Aoife Mannion have been awarded the PFA’s Community Champion award by Manchester United Foundation, for their ongoing support of the local community throughout the 2022/23 season.
Over the course of the season, both players have been recognised for the outstanding contribution and positivity they have brought to the region, engaging and inspiring young people when visiting local schools and projects.
Fred was nominated for the award after taking part in several charitable activities throughout the season, including two Dream Days, where he created lasting memories for fans with life-limiting illnesses.
Fred has met a number of our young people, including partner school pupil Freddie, from Kingfisher Special School, who he met in a sensory experience at Old Trafford last year. Fred also took part in a wellbeing session with students from partner high school, Co-op Academy Swinton.
More recently, Fred visited Loreto High School with team-mate, Alejandro Garnacho, where the pair took the time to visit different lessons, answering questions from junior leaders about their life experiences, posing for photos and signing items.
The day ended on a high when both players descended on a mixed PE lesson, joining in with football and rounders activities, before students presented Fred with the Community Champion trophy.
“It’s amazing for me to receive this award,” said Fred.
“As a Manchester United player, it’s very important to me to give back to the community that surrounds this club. I’ve really enjoyed working with the Foundation this season and speaking to the children, whether that is at schools or at the training ground.
“Over the season, I’ve seen the impact of the Foundation in the local area, and it’s always a pleasure for me to be involved and share my experiences and advice to the kids. I always want to help and look forward to continuing this next season.”
Manchester United Women defender Aoife Mannion has been recognised with the same award for her passion and engagement with young people this season.
Aoife has not only sent messages of support to children at Foundation schools and projects, but also visited an Inclusive Street Reds session at Manchester Academy, taking part in drills and a Q&A.
In a recent visit to Carrington – organised by Aoife herself – young female footballers from partner high school, Waterhead Academy, experienced an overwhelming meet and greet with members of the women’s team, who took the time to answer questions before distributing kit and boots to the girls that Aoife had arranged.
When presented with the award, Aoife said: “I’m delighted to have won the PFA Community Champion award this season. I think it’s so nice to be able to do things for the community - I don’t think that we can do enough, so anything that we can do to get involved with young people, especially in girls’ football, it’s a really, really good thing.
“The work that the Foundation does is so important, I feel very lucky and privileged to be able to experience that and I just hope that I can continue to do it in the future.”
Each season, players are nominated for going above and beyond in their support of the Foundation and the local communities.
The PFA’s CEO, Maheta Molango, said: “The PFA has once again been immensely proud of the outstanding efforts of players this season and we feel they should be recognised for their support and involvement in the local community.
“The award will hopefully raise awareness of the importance many of our members attach to their roles off the pitch and highlight their continued commitment to support those most in need along with engaging in areas where they have a personal interest. We would like to offer our congratulations to this season’s recipient of the 2022/23 PFA Community Champion Award.”