CamdenNewJournal

The independent London newspaper

Arsenal offer fleet of cars to frontline workers battling Covid-19

Gunners also offer £150,000 in donations

24 March, 2020 — By Bronwen Weatherby

ARSENAL has offered help transporting NHS mental health workers delivering medication and emergency supplies to those in need in the ongoing Covid-19 crisis.

The club said its Arsenal in the Community cars will be made available to the frontline workers who will be driven on a voluntary basis by Arsenal in the Community staff.

The Gunners have also pledged £150,o00 to community groups working to tackle Covid-19.

In a statement released today (Tuesday), the club said: “Arsenal Football Club has never shied away from responding to the needs of its community. In these uncertain times we are taking a series of steps to ensure our local and global communities receive our full support.”

Their cash donations include £100,000 which is being donated to local charities and organisations that are supporting those most in need during this COVID-19 crisis.

“We are in constant dialogue with Islington Council and our partners in the NHS to ensure this response is aligned with their priorities and supports those most vulnerable,” the statement read.

Another £50,000 has already been donated to local community initiatives by The Arsenal Foundation, the club said.

The money, gifted in partnership with Islington Giving, will also be re-directed to Islington Giving’s Crisis Fund as part of this COVID-19 community response.

The Camden New Journal understands the club plan to enlarge their response over the next few weeks and months, tailoring their effort as the situation develops.

They are also discussing ways of supporting local schools and pupil referral and producing online education programmes for children combining football and learning.

Arsenal in the Community’s BTEC tutors are continuing to deliver classes remotely to ensure assignment deadlines are met, according to the club.

Social inclusion staff are also maintaining contact with the vulnerable young people they support.

Arsenal Football Club Managing Director, Vinai Venkatesham, said: “Arsenal Football Club exists to make our fans proud and create a sense of community for people in Islington, across the UK and around the world. During these uncertain and unprecedented times, we will endeavour to ensure that remains the case.”

The club has suspended its work with communities in Za’atari Refugee Camp in Jordan and in Jakarta, Indonesia where The Arsenal Foundation runs Coaching for Life with Save the Children.

However, it sayid Arsenal coaches will work remotely with local coaches to support the children who normally participate in the programme with “educational and morale-lifting contact, resources and messages”.

Together with Save the Children, Arsenal says they will “continually reassess whether and when we can resume delivery of our live coaching programme”.

Save the Children is developing a COVID-19 Hub to assist parents and children in the UK.

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