Participants on our Club Together refugee football programme have been kitted out with brand new bespoke warm-up gear thanks to a sponsored hike from our Premier League Works employability students.

Premier League Works uses the power of football clubs and the Premier League to engage young people aged 16-29 who are not currently involved in education, training or employment.

The programme, delivered in partnership with the Professional Footballers Association and the Prince’s Trust, provides young people with support to develop their personal and social skills giving them the confidence and the experience they need to make a positive transition back into education, access training or gain meaningful employment.

As part of the ‘Do Something’ process of the programme, the group took on the Middlesbrough Three Peak Challenge, walking 14 miles across three of the regions biggest hills, Eston Nab, Roseberry Topping and Captain Cooks Monument.

The students received sponsorship from friends and family to complete the walk, with the proceeds used to buy our Club Together refugee football programme participants their very own MFC Foundation tracksuit top and shorts.

Club Together runs in partnership with the Methodist Asylum Project in Middlesbrough, which helps give both refugees and asylum seekers in the area an opportunity to participate in sporting activities, and also help with their English.

MFC Foundation have had refugees from all over the world join the programme after moving to Teesside; from Syria to Eritrea, and Afghanistan to Sudan.

Patrick Robinson, Premier League Works Coordinator at MFC Foundation said: 

“When approaching the ‘Do Something’ section of the programme, our students had already identified the Club Together programme as a group they would actively like to help, and felt passionate around making them feel like they belong.

“They had the idea of buying them their very own training kit to wear during sessions, which would unify their belonging.  They sourced, designed and ordered the training kits themselves, and were able to present them to the group during one of their ‘crossover’ sessions with them.

“Our students’ main aim was to ensure that new and existing members of Club Together felt a sense of belonging with the tracksuits, and truly feeling to a part of the Teesside community.”

Paul South, Club Together Coordinator at MFC Foundation said: 

“I can’t thank the Premier League Works participants enough for the kind gesture they made with the training gear. As you can appreciate, moving to a new country with very limited resources can be intimidating for some people, so receiving such thoughtful gifts is incredibly humbling.

“Our two programmes have worked together closely over the past few months, and I can see how both groups have been enriched by learning about one another’s cultures. Community cohesion is vitally important in this area, and I’m thrilled to see how well the programmes have linked together.”


Originally published on Middlesbrough's website here.