The charitable initiative launched by some of the biggest names in football is aiming to provide life-changing opportunities for disadvantaged young people
Liverpool FC legends Steven Gerrard and Jamie Carragher reunited for a special fundraising lunch on Friday.The duo came together for the Football For Change charity event at the Hope Street Hotel in Liverpool and took part in a Q&A hosted by the broadcaster Alastair Campbell.
More than £100,000 was raised at the star-studded event which also included a performance by the BRIT-Award winning musician Tom Grennan. Liverpool legend, Alan Kennedy, who scored the winner for the Reds in the 1981 European Cup final against Real Madrid, was also in attendance at the event.
Football For Change was launched in 2020 by Carragher, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Conor Coady. It has since been backed by Gerrard and a string of other big football names including Borussia Dortmund’s Jude Bellingham, Leeds United star Jack Harrisson, Everton’s Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Match Of The Day presenter, Gary Lineker. Global music icon Sir Rod Stewart is also a supporter of Football For Change having attended its inaugural gala launch event in Liverpool last November.
Business leaders including Swinton Insurance CEO Ian Donaldson and the influential public relations executive Dan Hughes were also involved in the launch.
Sponsored by Swinton Insurance, the charitable initiative is aiming to lift young people from disadvantaged backgrounds out of poverty by providing life-changing opportunities in education and employment.
On Friday, Football For Change announced it was funding a month-long sports and educational trip to Dallas for more than 60 young people from socially and economically challenged communities from across the North West.
Gerrard and Carragher spoke in detail about their respective playing careers at the lunch, and their different career paths after winning multiple trophies with Liverpool.
Steven Gerrard said: “I am immensely proud to be involved with Football For Change. This is such an important initiative and I know from growing up that for a lot of young people good opportunities are scarce.
“We’re aiming to change that and to give youngsters who’ve not necessarily had the best start in life a little bit of hope. For example, Football For Change funding the Dallas trip is fantastic and will give young people who need it the opportunity of a lifetime. More and more footballers and business leaders are getting involved with this initiative and I hope more do too. It will change lives for the better and make a real difference to young people who need a bit of support in life.”
Jamie Carragher said: “This is just the beginning for Football For Change. Everyone involved is keen to help young people, who’ve not got the means, money or connections, to build better lives. Too many have seen opportunities taken away from them in recent years. We’ve got to level the playing field so they all have the same life chances.”
Ian Donaldson, CEO of Swinton Insurance and co-chair of Football For Change, added: “The first Football For Change lunch has been an incredible success. I keep saying that Football For Change is unique because it is a powerful collaboration between business leaders and footballers which is something that has not been done before now. We can already see the difference it can make and we’ve got big plans for the future.”