2020 has been challenging, but Norwich City’s Community Sports Foundation has continued its sterling work for the people of Norfolk
During the lockdown, the Foundation launched the Canaries Covid-19 Community Support Project thanks to a donation of over £200k from the first team squad and directors. The project has two phases, response and recovery: an initial response to help vulnerable members of the community during lockdown, and a longer-term plan to help the community to recover from the impact of lockdown such as inactivity, social isolation, and unemployment.
Members of the first team, Club staff, and Foundation staff made several thousand wellbeing calls to potentially vulnerable season ticket holders, and deliveries of food and activity packages were made to a range of charities and local causes. Throughout lockdown, the Foundation team adapted quickly to continue their community support remotely, through the development of an app, live and recorded online sessions, and other support for usual and new participants.
While balancing the challenges that everyone is facing in 2020, the Foundation is nearing completion of the construction of its community hub The Nest. The first phase of the project, which saw the rejuvenation of a disused sports facility on the outskirts of Norwich, was completed in late 2018 and included the renovation of the existing clubhouse and relaying of seven grass football pitches.
A second phase includes a full-size floodlit 3G pitch, which has been open over the summer of 2020, and a brand-new building housing two multi-use areas, an IT suite, and accessible changing facilities to help the Foundation increase its community reach by over 12,000 people a year.
The Build the Nest fundraising campaign is nearing its conclusion thanks to an injection of £500,000 from Norwich City FC, match-funding the efforts of supporters and fundraisers to raise the final £1million of the £4.6million total cost. The Foundation’s team are working to reach the final target in time for the completion of construction in the coming months.
Recently, Norwich City season ticket holders and members showed their pride in the Club’s community presence by donating over £175,000 of potential rebates in order to help the Foundation reduce its lost fundraising revenue in 2020 from cancelled events.