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'FRIENDS OF CHUMS' NAMED AS CLUB CHARITY OF THE YEAR

14 September 2015

Friends of CHUMS - the Child Bereavement, Trauma and Emotional Wellbeing Service

Luton Town are delighted to announce that Friends of CHUMS, the Child Bereavement, Trauma and Emotional Wellbeing Service will be our official Club charity for the 2015/16 season.

Friends of CHUMS exists to support the work of CHUMS - the Bereavement, Trauma and Emotional Wellbeing Service for Children and Young People in Bedfordshire. The charity initially raised funds to support the Trauma Service, as well as some of their workshops and the annual Remembrance Service. 

In response to local need, the charity has expanded its role to support a new non-bereavement trauma service (for sexual abuse and witness to domestic violence), a recreational therapeutic service for children who can’t readily engage in talking therapies and is currently raising funds to launch an emergency suicide response service so that families are not alone in the aftermath of this devastating event. 

Friends of CHUMS Chief Executive Dawn Hewitt said: “I am absolutely delighted that ‘Friends of CHUMS’ has been chosen by Luton Town as their charity of the year.  It is a fantastic boost to us as a children’s mental health and emotional wellbeing service.  We very much look forward to working alongside the Club to improve the lives of vulnerable children and young people across Luton and Bedfordshire who struggle with compromised mental health.”

Luton Town Chief Executive Gary Sweet said: “A local Football Club has a unique opportunity to support its community, and this is particularly true of Luton Town. In recent months we’ve introduced a number of initiatives which we will continue to have an impact locally - including our link-up with Prostate Cancer UK last season, our commitment to paying the Living Wage and our continuing support of Luton Foodbank. 

“The Club has a long history of supporting local organisations wherever possible. This season we decided that in choosing a smaller number of ‘official’ charity partners we would be able to offer the maximum possible impact both through fundraising and awareness. We are delighted to welcome Friends of CHUMS as our first official charity. It’s an organisation that was set up locally, and through its vital work, supports many young people and families among whom I know there are Luton Town supporters.”

Selection Process

This year is the first time that the Club has selected an official Charity partner. The rigorous selection process began during the summer, as twenty six organisations applied to become one of three official charity partners. 
From the original list, the Club’s charity committee selected a shortlist of 6 organisations to be carried forward to become the Club, player’s or supporter’s charity of the year. The final selection of Club charity of the year was made by way of a staff vote.

Level Trust

The final staff vote was tied between Friends of CHUMS and Level Trust so their tenure as Club charity of the year will be deferred until the 16/17 season.
 
Jane Malcolm, Director at Level Trust said “Level Trust are delighted to have been chosen as Luton Town Football Club Charity of the Year for 2016/17. Like us, the Club are passionate about supporting the community in Luton, so we are very excited about developing a partnership with them which we know will enable us to help many more local children who are struggling with the effects of poverty.” 
                 
Today’s announcement that Friends of CHUMS are Luton Town’s official Club charity of the year will be followed in the coming weeks with news of the Players’ selection and then a public vote online to choose the supporter’s charity of the year. 
The Club’s charity committee will be meeting with Friends of Chums in the coming days, and we will publish further details as to how we will be supporting them as soon as possible.


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