In 2007 the members of the England football team decided that all of their future pay cheques for England training sessions and matches would now be donated to charitable causes. This impressive gesture has remained the case for all of the subsequent England football sides to this day. Every time you catch an England game on TV, the players fees are helping out a worthy cause somewhere in the UK.
The England Footballer’s Foundation was set up in 2007 as a registered charity to deal with the money and its distribution. Since the charity started, nearly £3 million has been generated for UK charities such as Help For Heroes, Cancer Research UK, The Bobby Moore Fund, Rays Of Sunshine and Wellchild.
Wellchild is the national foundation for sick children in the United Kingdom. They have been providing critical care, both physical and emotional, to sick children and young people for over 30 years. They rely entirely on charitable donations, foundations and trust funds to keep up their good work and the England Footballer’s Foundation is a major contributor. Chairman of Wellchild, John Evans, oversees a number of programmes that help both those in need of medical care and their families get through times of crisis.
The Bobby Moore Fund was founded in 1993 by Bobby’s widow Stephanie Moore after his death due to bowel cancer. Bobby was regarded as one of the greatest England football players of all time and holds a truly legendary place in British sports history. The fund in his honour focuses on bowel cancer awareness and celebrated 20 years of fundraising in 2013. It is highly appropriate that the England Footballer’s Foundation helps out the Bobby Moore Fund for Cancer Awareness. Bobby was, after all, one of England’s most beloved and well remembered players.
Even without the contributions from the England Footballer’s Fund, the top football players in the UK leagues are some of the most charity-minded people you’ll find. Most football clubs have a charity wing that helps their local community in a number of ways, and events like the Charity Shield raise money for good causes every year. Top flight football stars get paid great wages, something the newspapers are never slow to point out, but the charity work they do rarely gets the same amount of press coverage, and that is a real shame.