Everton and Everton in the Community are increasing activity on its ‘Blue Family’ campaign in response to the latest national lockdown.
‘Blue Family’, first launched in March 2020, is a coordinated engagement campaign that maintains contact with fans and participants and provides vital support and assistance to some of the most vulnerable, socially isolated, and at-risk members of the community during the ongoing pandemic.
In the last 10 months, the campaign has directly supported more than 27,000 vulnerable and at-risk families, made almost 25,000 check-in and welfare calls, delivered in excess of 14,000 emergency food parcels and provided more than 250,000 meals for school children, participants and local residents – as well as delivering bespoke online content consumed by millions across the world, aimed at keeping people connected.
And, following news this week of a return to a full national lockdown across the UK, the Club and its charity are further stepping up the ‘Blue Family’ efforts.
The expansion of activity will include increased outbound calls to fans, additional support to deal with an increase in referrals for people in need of support and assistance and expanded content output to keep communities across Liverpool and beyond connected.
This increased support is in addition to the charity’s ongoing support for the participants of its 40+ programmes. These are continuing remotely, delivering online education, fitness and coaching sessions, tailored mental health support, regular welfare calls and bespoke wrap-around support to the vulnerable, elderly and/or at-risk participants. This work supports the aim of helping to address the rising social issues caused by the pandemic including social isolation and the widening inequality gap in education.
Increased support for vulnerable families of pupils attending Everton in the Community’s 60 partner schools across the Liverpool City Region also continues. With all of the charity’s delivery taking place in areas of mass deprivation, the charity has increased its outreach work to provide further support to families who have been identified as a top priority and may be struggling due to loss of income.
And in line with Government restrictions, work can continue face-to-face with the charity’s most at-risk and vulnerable young participants, providing intense mentoring and tools to support rising anxiety concerns. This includes possible bereavement support that might be needed now and in the future.
Richard Kenyon, Everton’s Director of Marketing, Communications and Community and CEO of Everton in the Community, said: “The ‘Blue Family’ campaign was launched to allow the Club and Everton in the Community to effectively coordinate outreach and support in the face of the pandemic. Tens of thousands of people have already been helped and supported by the campaign. And, as we face up to the latest lockdown and the wide variety of health and economic challenges that people are battling against, the work of the campaign is more important than ever.
“Our Club has never lost sight of its place in our community – and of the role Everton can play in bringing people together and providing a light in the darkness of the situation we are all faced with. Everybody has been impacted in some way by the pandemic. With that in mind, the ‘Blue Family’ campaign is incredibly diverse in terms of the support that is being provided. But the one constant in everything we are doing is the key objective of bringing people together – keeping communities connected and ensuring the Club continues to do everything possible to help.”
Everton has reallocated Club and Everton in the Community staff to ‘Blue Family’. For those most vulnerable and at-risk members of society, the campaign is on hand to provide:
- Essential food parcels
- Financial assistance for prescription purchases and delivery
- Mobile phone credit for those living alone and with limited support networks
- Support with gas and/or electricity vouchers for those facing increased fuel bills
- Assistance with provision of digital devices to support home-learning
- Mental health support and advice
In addition to Everton in the Community’s network of support provision across the Liverpool City Region and beyond, there is a referral service on the Club’s website to ensure those in greatest need can access support provision. [Referral Link]
The ‘Blue Family’ section of the official Everton website is also home to a wealth of online content to support home learning, fan wellbeing and remote supporter interaction. This includes downloadable packs for children, cooking and exercise guidance and online events to maintain community cohesion.
The Club’s Fan Centre team will continue to make outbound calls to supporters to provide a friendly voice to talk to.