The good work of Chorley FC’s Community Foundation team has been recognised, as they have been officially awarded charitable status. The benefits this brings mean that the Chorley FC Community Foundation can not only continue to deliver its sports programmes and other projects, it can also expand on its achievements to date.
Chorley FC Chair Darren Jenkinson explained: “Gaining charitable status is an important step forward for the Community Foundation. The Charity Commission’s decision recognises that the work we are undertaking is for the benefit of the Chorley community, and allows us to develop a wider range of opportunities for everyone.
“Chorley FC Community Foundation works with people of all ages, from our in-school activities through to Walking Football teams. We host a Sporting Memories group which gives people the chance to come together and talk. The group is primarily attended by older people, some experiencing dementia who without this group wouldn’t necessarily get out of the house.”
Mr Jenkinson continued: “Being granted Charitable Status allows us to be more ambitious with our plans to develop projects which benefit people across the Chorley Borough, and provide opportunities to those who would otherwise be excluded.”
As well as devising and delivering its own community programmes, the football club’s Foundation also supports a wide range of other local groups and charities, as well as forming joint ventures with other public sector organisations.
One of the main aims of the Chorley FC Community Foundation is to use the club’s facilities as a venue to get more members of the community involved in fitness and activities, which improve the health and well-being of individuals. They are particularly keen to find activities and events that can involve local people and children who may face difficulties accessing traditional sporting activities. This includes members of the community with disabilities – visual or unseen – and those facing financial hardship.
Chorley FC Chairman Ken Wright adds “Chorley FC is a club which proudly sits at the heart of the Chorley community, and we believe that sports and health related activities should be available to everyone. The Community Foundation was created to make a difference to individuals and bring positive change to the Chorley community. Gaining Charitable status allows us to build on the good work already undertaken and explore new and exciting ideas for the future”.
Chorley FC Community Foundation flagship projects include:
Walking Football – which is supported by Chorley Borough Council and local fitness business, Active Nation. The project aims to involve people in the Chorley area who are reluctant to engage with sport and exercise, due to their perceived lack of ability or fitness. By creating low impact but fun football sessions, the Foundation has helped to build the confidence of participants, and improve their health. Walking Football has been such a success, that people from outside the Chorley borough have begun to sign up too.
Sporting Memories – which is run in association with the Sporting Memories Foundation. This is aimed at people with dementia causing conditions – such as Alzheimer’s Disease – but also tackles isolation and loneliness amongst all residents of Chorley. The project provides safe, comfortable gatherings to enable participants to share memories of sporting moments and their passion for sport, to build connections and engage in nostalgia-based therapy.