The club’s Kitmas campaign has raised over £5,000, meaning that over 200 local children from low income families will receive a Christmas present this year.
Earlier this week, with the support of the Cheltenham based charity, Caring for Communities and People (CCP), more than 200 club shirts were distributed to young Cheltenham fans at Oakwood Primary School, Gardners Lane Primary School and St Thomas More Primary School.
This year, owing to the fantastic support of the local business community and supporters, the club was able to create five times the impact in the local community, compared to 2021.
Businesses were urged to donate 4 shirts to the campaign if they could, with supporters being encouraged to add 1 shirt to the total, with entries into a prize draw included for those who generously took up this option. The winners of the ‘supporter reward’ and the ‘business reward’ will be contacted later this week.
Robins Midfielder, James Olayinka, was on hand to help spread some festive cheer and support the campaign by appearing at Oakwood Primary to meet pupils, staff and deliver a large number of club shirts.
The club’s Head of Commercial, Richard Morris, commented on the campaign; ‘The level of support and engagement, from club supporters and commercial partners, in relation to this campaign and other community-led initiatives, enables us to make a significant impact in the local area. This year, with rising energy bills and a cost-of-living crisis, I’m pleased we’ve been able to offer our support and ease the financial burden for a larger number of families, via the Kitmas campaign and utilizing our facilities as a ‘warm hub’.
Cordell Ray MBE, CEO at CCP added; ‘It's an honour to have the club support us again this year, through the ever-popular 12 days of Kitmas campaign. Seeing the faces of the school children as they met James Olayinka and we handed out the club shirts, confirms the impact it has. My gratitude extends out to all the fans, the heart of every club, and to the wider community and businesses for getting behind the campaign and making a difference to so many children.’
Kitmas was founded by football coach and activist Paul Watson and his wife Lizzie, with support from stand up comedians Vix Leyton and Mark Watson (Paul's brother). Their goal is to run this appeal every year and eventually to become a registered charity. Since they started in 2020, they have distributed 3,000 shirts to young football fans with the help of Bristol City, Forest Green Rovers, Cheltenham Town, Exeter City and Frome Town.
CCP is a registered charity (No.1043143) that exists to transform the lives of children, young people, families and vulnerable adults by preventing homelessness, strengthening families and promoting independence. With a head office in Cheltenham, we currently employ 220 staff, backed up by a team of 160 volunteers, currently delivering services and projects in Gloucestershire.