Club And Foundation Launch Premier League Supported Engaging Health And Wellbeing Initiative

Move Well Middlesbrough is a partnership project between MFC Foundation and Middlesbrough Football Club which will support the local community in engaging closely with the club via health and wellbeing initiatives.

The launch follows a successful grant application to the Premier League Charitable Fund and their Premier League Fans Fund.

The Premier League Fans Fund support a range of fan-focussed projects aiming at strengthening the links between fans, clubs and their communities. Engagement with historically underrepresented groups will help diversify the fan base.

The club have three priorities for fan engagement.
1. Increase the diversity of fans attending matches.
2. Support men’s mental and physical health using the power of the club.
3. Support and engage more fans living with dementia.

Under the Move Well Middlesbrough umbrella, Middlesbrough Football Club Foundation’s Ageing Well Provision, Health Bus and MatchFIT programmes will lead the way on a project which will be a combination of community and stadium-based activities.

The physical health of people living on Teesside has been reported as being worse than the national average with several wards ranked in the top 20% of most deprived areas. Also, compared with national averages, life expectancy is over 12 years lower for adults, while cardiovascular-related death is higher.

The club and foundation have a long-held alliance in supporting work around men’s mental health in an area where self-harm hospital admissions and suicide rates are the highest in the North East.

Premier League Director of Community, Nick Perchard, said: “Fans are the lifeblood of football and their commitment to, and involvement with, their local club is essential to the continued success of the game at every level.

“Through the Premier League Fans Fund we are investing in projects that will enhance connections between clubs and fans, whilst also delivering even more community impact. By supporting clubs across England and Wales, from both the men’s and women’s game, to develop projects that respond directly to the needs of their fans, we can help to ensure that football offers a fantastic experience for everyone.”

Premier League funding supports projects that respond to local need, and which aim to improve the match day environment for fans and/or residents, address fan behaviour, and community impact such as the cost-of-living crisis, build upon a club’s heritage and engage and support underrepresented fan groups (disability, ethnicity, LGBTQ+, women and girls).

Across the project, the aim is to improve the health and wellbeing of people living on Teesside and using the club as the mechanism to do that.

Together, we’ll work towards building self-esteem and confidence through living healthier lives.