Liverpool FC Foundation closes engaging Day 2

20 November 2019

Liverpool FC Foundation closes engaging Day 2

We kicked off Day 2 of our 13th EFDN “CSR in European Football” Conference in Barcelona with 15 engaging roundtables. The second session of roundtables offered more than 170 attendees the opportunity to have a more in-depth discussion on one specific topic.

The attendees shared best practices in fields like health, education, discrimination or dementia and gave an insight into organisational challenges. The representatives of clubs, leagues, FAs and other social organisations presented ideas for collaboration at a European level. We discussed the role of EFDN and collected ideas for future actions.

Afterwards, the members were able to witness the first three Breakout Sessions of Day 2. Mental health, stadium accessibility and STEM education were on the agenda. Sarah Medcalf presented Be a Game Changer, a campaign to encourage people in Newcastle, in particular men, to talk openly about mental health and to provide tips on how to improve their physical and mental well-being. She said: “The idea for the programme was developed by asking ourselves what kind of issues we are facing in the North-East of England. Mental Health is a big issue in our community, mainly among the male population. But men usually do not commit to mental health campaigns, but rather to a football campaign and that’s why football is such an efficient tool in that programme.”

Jochen Kemmer, Disability Access Officer at CAFE explained what stadium accessibility means and showcased some best practices. The examples cover a broad range of measures including accessible parking, accessible signage to accessible seating options, and various other services for the needs of disabled fans. Craig Wilson (Big Hearts) presented the CSR work of the community trust with those who are the hardest to reach in their community. Together with Tanya Howden (Robotical), Wilson talked about the initiative “Digital for all” and the Digital Skills Hub at Heart of Midlothian FC which gives all young people the opportunity to develop digital skills and to be creative with technology.

Afterwards, the attendees saw the last three Breakout Sessions focusing on fundraising, social media and creating a holistic CSR approach. Thomas Buchanan (Celtic FC Foundation) explored Celtic FC Foundation’s recent success with international fundraising ventures and highlighted the importance of partnerships: “Look out for organisations that can help you. Finding the right partnerships in countries is very important.” Greg Baker (Saints Foundation) outlined how the foundation wants to become “the best practice in the UK”.

Joan Marcet Vila (Barça Foundation) gave an insight into the approach that the Barça Foundation uses on its social media channels and included a few examples and an overview of the strategy that the foundation has been implementing for the last 2 years. This strategy has proven to be successful as the Barça Foundation managed to obtain above-average engagement rates on its content.

Peter Davidson and John Crawford explained how Montrose Community Trust (MCT), engages with more than 1000 distinct participants, every week, and approximately 3000 per year, through an extensive range of life changing programmes. They shared details of the values that shape their work, and that tackles issues such as supporting those that are unemployed, socially isolated, recovering from harmful addictions, living with a disability, or suffering from poor mental health.

As the last speaker of the 13th EFDN Conference at Camp Nou, Matt Parrish, Head of Liverpool FC Foundation, took centre stage in a packed Auditorium 1899. He outlined the CSR strategy of Liverpool FC Foundation and presented the Red Neighbours programmes as a best practice.

EFDN CEO Hubert Rovers (EFDN) wrapped up the 13th edition and said: “We had amazing and inspiring few days of really good networking sessions here in Barcelona. I would like to thank all our partners, speakers and especially our co-host Barça Foundation. I hope to see you again at my home town Breda on the 24th and 25th of March 2020.”

You can find more photos of Day 2 here.