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Fernandes presents Arissa with Community Captain award

Bruno Fernandes has presented a Foundation participants with a Community Captain award as part of the Premier League’s More Than A Game campaign.

| by Rebecca Mee

In a special moment, the Manchester United captain presented Arissa with a captain’s armband and pennant in recognition of her dedication to Foundation and Premier League-supported programmes.


In the past four years, Arissa has completely turned her life around after initially being referred to the Foundation’s targeted prevention programme [funded by the Premier League] where she would take part in workshops around youth violence prevention and personal development. This transitioned to Arissa joining a Street Reds [Premier League Kicks] session in Moss Side, using her love of football to develop her confidence and leadership skills.


It was with this support that Arissa really began to raise her aspirations and make decisions that would give her a better outlook in life. This includes joining the Foundation’s Youth Board where she has been a part of social action projects and discussions around youth violence with dignitaries from Greater Manchester Police, Salford Council, and presenting to Greater Manchester Mayor, Andy Burnham.


At the end of 2023, Arissa was successful in joining the Street Games Youth Advisory Board as an advisor, inputting to national policy around youth community sport and engagement.


Thrilled at receiving the award, Arissa said: “It’s been amazing to be here, meet Bruno and receive this award; it means a lot to me. Manchester United Foundation is not just football, it’s a safe space for a lot of kids. I’ve always said if I can help a kid like I was helped I think I’d be very grateful.”


Inspired by their interaction, Bruno said: “It’s been a pleasure to meet Arissa and hear all about her journey with the Foundation. It’s amazing what programmes like these can do for young people in the local community and how it can literally change their life.


“This is what Manchester United is about, supporting young people and being there for our communities and fans. I’m sure Arissa will go on to do great things in her life and I’m fortunate to present her with this award.”


Arissa continued: “Back when I was in school, I was taking everything for granted, but if you look in the right places there are opportunities, and I want to be that person to bring even more opportunities into the community.


“It’s also helped my own mindset; my mum and dad are always pushing me to come to the projects, I think without them and the Foundation, my life could have taken a whole different path. United and the Foundation is that staple in the community.”


The Premier League’s More Than A Game campaign highlights how the Premier League’s investment into all levels of football enables people connected to clubs to have a positive impact on their local communities.