Liverpool FC is scaling up its Unity Is Strength Community Response work to help those most in need during the current national lockdown.
The club, its community team Red Neighbours and official charity, LFC Foundation, have been working together since the outbreak of COVID-19 to support their local communities during these unprecedented and difficult times.
Over the last nine months, the club has donated more than £300,000 to the North Liverpool Foodbank and The Trussell Trust’s foodbank network across the Liverpool City Region, provided 42,000 freshly prepared free meals (1,000 per week) to support local families, made more than 1,000 calls to isolated members of the community, gifted 1,500 festive food hampers to local families – including a fresh turkey and all the trimmings for Christmas – and donated thousands of LFC items and sweet treats to key workers.
This year, the club will continue to deliver this activity and more as a result of important learnings made since March last year about what is really needed during this very challenging period.
The Unity Is Strength Community Response work will now focus its efforts on four key areas: food poverty, social isolation, physical activity and wellbeing, and volunteering.
Some of the support provided will include:
- 1,000 fresh meals per week freshly prepared by Anfield chefs
- LFC and LFC Foundation staff volunteers will support local foodbanks
- Food parcels will be provided to local families in need
- Breakfast and lunch parcels will be provided to vulnerable families during school holidays
- Friendly phone calls will be made every day by LFC and LFC Foundation staff volunteers to local isolated residents via the club’s LFC Connect initiative
- Letters and pictures will be distributed to local residential care homes via Red Neighbours’ Red Pals initiative
- A range of ongoing accessible virtual LFC Foundation mental health support programmes. All virtual content will be available here
Physical activity and wellbeing
- LFC Foundation and Red Neighbours staff will deliver an extended weekly virtual timetable of targeted 30+ physical activity and wellbeing sessions for every age group. More information is available here
- Tailored school sessions and open access sessions. For more information, click here
- LFC and LFC Foundation staff volunteers will provide support across all community response activity as well as assisting community groups across the Liverpool City Region (in line with government guidelines)
With today being Blue Monday, widely recognised as one of the most difficult days of the year for many, the club has also launched a raft of additional activities under the banner ‘Red Monday’ which may help those who are struggling see the day from a different, more positive perspective:
- LFC Foundation is hosting a free student mental health workshop specifically designed to support students from across the city and beyond with their mental health
- Three live mental health workshops are available via Zoom at 11am, 3pm and 6pm. For more information or to register, click here
- Former Liverpool goalkeeper and LFC Foundation community representative Chris Kirkland will be sharing some top tips for positive mental health, which will be available on LFC Foundation’s social media platforms
- The LFC family will also be creating and submitting letters and pictures for Red Neighbours’ Red Pals initiative to share with local care home residents
Matt Parish, director of LFC Foundation, said: “The work we started during the first lockdown in March hasn’t stopped, we’ve continued to support and stay in contact with our local communities.
“Both LFC Foundation and Red Neighbours initiatives had returned in an adapted and safe way with over 30 different programmes being delivered across the region each week, but the majority of these have had to pause again upon entering national lockdown.
“Whilst we are moving most of those programmes onto virtual platforms, we also feel it’s really important to enhance our community response work again in these four key areas to help as many people as we can as we move through another very challenging period.”