Olly Murs

Manchester-based Swinton Insurance and online fashion and lifestyle retailer SHEIN is set to sponsor the third annual Football For Change gala taking place in Manchester this month.

The social mobility and charitable initiative was launched in 2021 by some of the biggest names from world football including Liverpool and England international Trent Alexander-Arnold, Leicester City star Conor Coady and Real Madrid ace Jude Bellingham. Leading the initiative is the former Liverpool and England defender Jamie Carragher, with further backing from Manchester City midfielder Jack Grealish, Arsenal and Women’s Super League hero Beth Mead and Manchester United legend Gary Neville.

The project, which has raised almost £1 million in less than three years, aims to provide better life chances for young people growing up in poverty in some of the most disadvantaged parts of the UK by funding life-changing education, employment and sports programmes.

This year’s star-studded fundraising event, hosted by BBC Radio 2 presenter Vernon Kay, will take place on Saturday 18 November and will feature headline performances from pop icons Olly Murs, Beverley Knight and Tinie Tempah.

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Joining the all-star Football For Change line-up is former footballer Peter Crouch and his wife Abbey Clancy, whose popularity has soared in recent years due to the success of their ‘Therapy Crouch’ podcast. The pair are expected to be joining a live Q&A hosted by Vernon Kay.

The Football For Change gala annually attracts some of the biggest names from the world of sport and celebrity. Previous attendees have included Sir Rod Stewart, Westlife, Noel Gallagher, Melanie C, John Bishop, Coleen Rooney and TV presenter Carol Vorderman.

“The 2023 Football For Change line-up is absolutely incredible and will enable us to raise thousands of pounds that will help some of the most disadvantaged young people in the country build better futures,” said Jamie Carragher, who is co-chairman of the initiative.

Dance With Me Tonight hitmaker, Olly Murs, added: “I’m buzzing to perform at this year’s Football For Change gala. It is a brilliant cause that I was pleased to get involved with last year too.

“The football players and businesses involved are doing an incredible job to help change the lives of disadvantaged young people for the better. I’m sure it will be a fantastic night and I can’t wait to see everyone in Manchester.”

Cui He, Director of Europe at sponsors SHEIN, said:

“SHIEN is absolutely delighted to be sponsoring the 2023 Football For Change Gala. For us, this is a continuation of our commitment to supporting grassroots initiatives in the UK, which provide opportunity and increase the life chances of people facing extreme disadvantages. We are particularly pleased that some of the key beneficiaries of this year’s Football For Change fundraising will be young women and girls, which is important to us and follows our involvement with the Women’s Football Awards earlier this year.”

Ian Donaldson, CEO, Swinton Insurance, said:

“Football For Change is making a huge difference in breaking down the barriers to opportunity for young people from disadvantaged backgrounds. In less than three years, hundreds of young people have been given support through programmes in education, employment and sport, which is helping them build brighter futures. This is such a fantastic initiative, and I’m proud that we’ve been part of this from the beginning with Swinton as the headline sponsor.”

Football For Change was launched by the football stars in partnership with public relations leader Dan Hughes and his agency, This Generation Communications (TGC).

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