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Newcastle United Foundation’s United As One programme awarded £120,000 grant to bring communities of all faiths and races together

Newcastle United Foundation’s United As One programme is set to receive a huge boost towards tackling discrimination and connecting communities of all faiths and races across the North East through substantial Government funding.

The United As One initiative was launched in 2019 to encompass a wide range of activities undertaken by Newcastle United and Newcastle United Foundation to promote inclusion, diversity and welfare within football and our society.

Now, Foundation activities under the Under As One banner that provide education and meaningful opportunities for social integration, is being awarded £120,000 via the Faith, Race and Hate Crime Grants scheme to strengthen its reach across Northumberland, North Tyneside and Newcastle.

The United As One programme is among nine projects across the country to receive a substantial sum from the Government scheme to help build a welcoming society for all faiths and races through established community groups, charities and society organisations.

Newcastle United Foundation – the club’s official charity arm – will invest the grant into a number of programmes, reaching children, teenagers, young adults and older participants in the region.

Steve Beharall, Head of Newcastle United Foundation, said: “We are incredibly proud as an organisation to actively challenge discrimination through education, community engagement and our sports and employability programmes.

“We have made a commitment within our Foundation’s values to promote equality, diversity and inclusion and funding from the Faith, Race and Hate Crime Grant scheme will help us enormously in reaching and connecting even more communities across the North East.”

The grant application submitted by the Foundation detailed how existing community programmes can be adapted to further support participants, their families and communities who been hardest hit by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

The sum will directly fund:

  • United As One course delivery to 750 primary school pupils, learning what discrimination is, how to report a hate crime and to identify British values
  • Six-week Family Learning courses for up to 200 families, providing engagement between different faith and ethnic communities, facilitating positive relationships between families of different backgrounds and beliefs
  • Educating 400 secondary school pupils through Premier League Inspires sessions to prevent racially or religiously-motivated hate crimes or discriminatory behaviour, as well as teaching teenagers to understand the consequences of hate crimes and discrimination for themselves and others

Street Football, Walking Football and Kicks will also benefit from the grant, with staff facilitating targeted workshops and tournaments to introduce participants to different cultures and belief systems.

Faith Minister Lord Greenhalgh said: “I’m delighted that this Government is funding programmes like United As One that tackle hatred, discrimination and extremism and provide meaningful ways to bring people of different backgrounds together.

“I wish everyone involved in the project good luck and look forward to seeing the results of this programme.”

Newcastle United Foundation is marking the grant award by producing a short video following the story of Shayan Gazerani, a Community Coach at the charity who has inspired countless participants and colleagues with his commitment to helping isolated communities.

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