Blue Family Provides Vital Support To Thousands Across The Region

For the last four weeks, Everton Football Club and Everton in the Community staff have been providing vital support and assistance to thousands of individuals and families in need across Liverpool in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic through its Blue Family initiative.

Delivered collaboratively by Everton and its official charity, Blue Family is a coordinated outreach and engagement campaign to maintain contact with fans and participants, as well as provide tailored and focused support, assistance and guidance to some of the most vulnerable, socially isolated and at-risk members of our community during these uncertain times.

And the first month of the campaign has seen Club and charity staff reach out to fans, participants and members of the community in greatest need with more than 1,750 check-in phone calls being made by staff, players and Club Ambassadors, whilst a referral service for access to Everton in the Community’s support provision has received almost 400 applications for support and assistance for individuals ranging in age from 18 to 98 years old.

Everton in the Community staff have delivered more than 850 emergency food parcels and distributed emergency foodbank vouchers to individuals and families living across Liverpool, in addition to purchasing and delivering medical prescriptions for the elderly and medicines for a terminally ill child.

 

In addition to purchasing emergency food and hygiene parcels and medical prescriptions, money raised through Blue Family donations has been used to purchase gas and electricity vouchers, as well as to support other initiatives and charities across the city, including North Liverpool Foodbanks, Fans Supporting Foodbanks and Liverpool 6 Community Centre.

The money raised to date is being distributed widely to support other projects across Liverpool and provide bespoke support for individuals who have been referred to Everton in the Community and/or Liverpool City Council. The campaign has so far helped to fund food vouchers for local children living in poverty who have lost access to free school meals and also essential kitchen equipment. It has also allowed for the provision of meals for the homeless, housing support and help with funding for items such as TVs and radios for people who are self-isolating alone.

Increased communications output on the Club and charity’s email, social media and web platforms, including engaging content for those in isolation, has reached millions as Blues all around the world have been tuning into exercise and mindfulness sessions, cookery demonstrations and bedtime stories, as well as accessing home-learning educational resources that have been compiled by first-team stars and training staff across the Club and Everton in the Community.

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00:35 Sat 28 Mar 2020

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The Blue Family initiative has also provided emergency support to Liverpool City Council’s referral scheme, with the donation and delivery of 100 food parcels to those in need across Liverpool City Region.

Everton in the Community CEO Richard Kenyon said: “We are fully committed to doing everything we can to maintain and extend our presence in the community during this very challenging period. The first month of our Blue Family initiative has seen us step up our year-round community provision to provide essential support and assistance to more than 3,000 individuals across our city who have found themselves in need or wanting a friendly voice to talk to during these difficult times. We expect these numbers to grow over the coming weeks and we are continually evolving our outreach to ensure that we are able to provide the best possible support we can to as many people as possible.

“I would like to thank our inspirational community staff who have wholeheartedly thrown themselves into our Blue Family campaign, our supporters who have donated so generously and all the companies who have stepped up to partner with us to support those in need at this time.”

Everton in the Community’s Neighbourhood team continues to be on hand to support the 10,000+ residents living within the immediate vicinity of Goodison Park – one of the most socially deprived wards in England – and has provided housing and money management support, as well as advice on benefits and Universal Credit. There has also been support for local refugees and asylum seekers through the charity’s ongoing relationship with British Red Cross.

The last 18 months have seen Everton in the Community’s Youth Engagement team support 1,500 young people who are at risk of social isolation, domestic violence and criminal exploitation. These issues have become more prevalent in the current climate as there is a rising concern for these individuals as they become more and more isolated. The charity’s support team are maintaining contact with the young people on its programmes and has increased its wrap-around support package, including intense mentoring, bespoke support and necessities for its more vulnerable participants and families, as well as preparing tools and resources to support rising anxiety concerns and possible bereavement support that might be needed now and in the future.

 

Everton in the Community’s Youth Engagement team are also working to provide additional support for the families of its young participants, as well as ensuring that the appropriate support and assistance is in place for vulnerable families of its 60 partner schools across the Liverpool City Region. As all of the charity’s delivery takes place in areas of mass deprivation across Liverpool City Region, Everton in the Community will be increasing its outreach work to provide further support to families who have been identified as a top priority and may be struggling due to loss of income.

During the month of April, USM Finch Farm is donating £2,500 worth of produce each week to the Blue Family campaign. This donation will be delivered directly to North Liverpool Foodbanks by catering supplier Brake Food and will be used to build emergency food parcels for local families in need. These parcels will support Everton in the Community participants and vulnerable, elderly and at-risk individuals through the Blue Family outreach work.

Award-winning social enterprise Community Shop has also committed to donating 100 emergency food parcels each week for Everton in the Community to distribute to those most in need during the coronavirus pandemic. Packed with essential items such as pasta, rice, cereal, tinned goods and UHT milk, the social enterprise is also working with the charity to explore additional ways to support local families living in poverty with donated food supplies targeted at children.

In the approach to Easter weekend, Community Shop donated 500 Easter eggs to Blue Family, which Everton in the Community staff personally delivered to participants from its PL Kicks programme, using the opportunity to engage with families and check-in with them during this difficult time. Eggs were also donated to Huyton Hey Manor Care Home to help lift residents’ spirits, and to those living in the Blue Mile.

 

 

Thanks to support from Alpha Taxis and Home Bargains, the charity has also been able to deliver food and hygiene bags full of essential items, including nappies, baby wipes and baby milk to vulnerable, isolated and homeless individuals, as well as elderly residents and new mums living in the Blue Mile.

Meanwhile, a generous donation of £1,000 from Access Point UK has been utilised to purchase microwaves for local families living in poverty who lack basic cooking equipment and, prior to receiving a microwave through the Blue Family campaign, their child’s only hot meal each day came from their free school meal entitlement.

Additionally, residents living across Liverpool 4 saw their streets given an injection of colour when Aintree Racecourse kindly donated 40 hanging baskets to the Club’s official charity. The bright and colourful hanging baskets were originally intended for use during The Randox Health Grand National 2020.

To find out how you can help and to give your support to Blue Family, click here.