The Reds' official charity, LFC Foundation, is expanding its successful MOVE programme to support even more patients under the care of Alder Hey Children's NHS Foundation Trust.
Originally launched in 2018 as a pilot project, MOVE uses the power of football and the LFC badge to appeal to young cystic fibrosis, asthma and endocrine patients. It encourages them to partake in physical activity, not only to improve their quality of life, but critically to help increase their life expectancy.
Patients enrolled on the MOVE programme are referred directly by Alder Hey and take part in fun multi-sports sessions with LFC Foundation coaches after their scheduled check-ups with a team of specialists.
The coaches also encourage patients to get involved in other physical activity sessions outside of hospital and provide information on a variety of sports activities taking place in their local community, delivered by LFC Foundation and other community organisations.
This year to date, LFC Foundation has worked with more than 80 young patients in person, provided tailored one-to-one sessions, and delivered more than 50 virtual sessions for patients and their families to access remotely at home.
It is now expanding its MOVE programme, which is funded by LFC Foundation, Alder Hey and the Premier League Professional Footballers' Association to reach and support more young people and their families in the local community.
Next month, the Foundation's coaches will deliver face-to-face weight management sessions at Anfield Sports and Community Centre. These sessions will provide families, who have been referred by Alder Hey, with specific, bespoke support around nutrition and exercise.
Matt Parish, chief executive of LFC Foundation, said: "To see the progression and success of the MOVE programme over the past few years has been fantastic. We are looking forward to expanding MOVE into the local community to broaden our support further.
"The Foundation and the club have a long-standing relationship with Alder Hey and it is a privilege to be able to work alongside their talented and committed staff to deliver this programme collaboratively to help young patients and their families."
Luis Barry is one young patient who has benefited from the MOVE programme, after he was referred by physiotherapists from the hospital's asthma clinic in August. Since starting the programme, Luis has been moved from the multi-disciplinary asthma service, which is for patients whose asthma has a history of being difficult to control, to a routine clinic, showing that his condition has become better controlled for.
Luis' mum told LFC Foundation that since starting the programme, "Luis' confidence and ability has improved, his competitive spirt has come out and he has learnt to manage his breathing whilst exercising. His increased activity has also helped to improve his sleep as well as improve his overall condition. I am over the moon with his achievements and I'm thankful for the MOVE programme."
Adam Walsh, physiotherapist in cystic fibrosis at Alder Hey, added: "This year, Alder Hey and the LFC Foundation have re-launched and expanded the MOVE project to support more patient groups as well as incorporating virtual sessions to promote activity. The project now supports children with complex asthma under the MDAS team at Alder Hey, as well as those in the LOOP endocrine service alongside children and young people with cystic fibrosis.
"For each of these patient groups, exercise and the support for participation in activity is vitally important. The MOVE project has been a great resource for our children in this aspect and the coaches provide positive role models and encouragement to help our children achieve greater levels of activity to benefit their overall health and wellbeing."
For more information on LFC Foundation and its programmes, visit https://foundation.liverpoolfc.com/.