Helping Hands today launch our Free Summer Football Programme 2019 in memory of Bradley Welsh, one of our founders, our friend and comrade. After discussions with Brad’s family and our coaches Helping Hands have decided to go ahead with our plans for this years kids football programme. Plans that Brad was key to putting together.

As in previous years we will provide Free structured coaching to kids in Craigmillar, Muirhouse, Wester Hailes, Moredun and Leith.

Our sessions are free, open to all children aged 8-16 years old, irrespective of their parents ability to pay. All participants get free water, fruits and healthy snacks. All sessions are led by qualified coaches (PVG- Protecting Vulnerable Groups) supported by professional and former professional footballers and local volunteers. All Helping Hands volunteers are Disclosure Scotland compliant.

“I attended the Edinburgh Helping Hands event at the Meadows in Edinburgh when I was Hibernian manager, It was a wonderful idea and the event was run to help give children free football from less affluent areas of Edinburgh. To see the many hundreds of kids running, playing and smiling made it all worthwhile. This is a brilliant venture and glad to hear it’s continuing and I hope it does for many years.”- Neil Lennon, Manager Celtic FC

All equipment used in Helping Hands community football programme is then donated to the local community to be used by children throughout the year. All sessions are organised on an inclusive basis and reinforce positive social messages of anti-racism, dangers of drugs and encouraging positive healthy life choices.

“Helping Hands is basically what it says. It’s about working class people in Edinburgh sticking together and doing positive things for the disadvantaged members of the community. It’s part of the great legacy of the one and only Brad Welsh.”- Irvine Welsh

Our sessions begins on July 1st and runs for six weeks. At the end of the programme we host a special event for all the children. This allows children from different communities and backgrounds to mix and play together in a secure and supported environment, breaking down economic, social and geographic barriers.

“Helping Hands is a great project in Edinburgh. Providing free football coaching to kids in housing schemes. I have attended some of Helping Hands events and seen how this programme benefits kids in these areas. I am delighted to see it continue.”- Darren McGregor, Footballer, Hibernian FC

Helping Hands Community Football Programme is part of our Health and Wellbeing strand. We thank our partners Social Bite, Irvine Welsh, Spartans FC, Currie FC, Edina Hibs, Edinburgh South CFC and Leith Athletic FC. Further announcements on future initiatives will be announced shortly. Helping Hands are determined to build a positive legacy for Brad and our communities.

Please support Helping Hands by donating at: https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/helpinghands-football

Jim Slaven, co-founder, Helping Hands
On behalf of Steering Group

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