When Dewsbury Rams advisory board member Ady Marsh read a slogan on the club’s 2020 kit, it sparked an idea.
“On the back of our new shirt it says ‘Your club, Your Community’, and I asked what does that really mean,” Marsh explained.
“On a Monday night the club runs the Rampage Club with all the community clubs, and gives sessions to all age-groups.
“That’s great, but I thought it had to be more than that in regards to what we’re doing for good causes and charities.”
Now the club has started working on local community programmes and has become a donor to the Dewsbury Street Kitchen, as well as supporting a food bank in the town and one in neighbouring Ossett.
Alongside Marsh, first-team prop Luke Nelmes has already become heavily involved in the projects.
Marsh explained: “I had some contact with a food bank in Ossett, which is very close geographically, but I thought we needed to do something in Dewsbury too.
“The Fusion Giving Food Bank and Dewsbury Street Kitchen do some great work.
“The Street Kitchen opens up on Thursday evenings with gazebos and they feed the homeless in the town.
“They set up at the market place in Dewsbury and hand out sleeping bags, winter clothing and tents.
“I saw them as great causes that Dewsbury Rams could get on board with, and we’ve already given one financial donation and will make another one.
“I’ve been down a couple of times and our prop Luke Nelmes has been helping out and serving.
“At Dewsbury Rams we want to be at the centre of the community and none of this is political.
“We’re non-political and non-judgemental. We’re not looking at the whys and wherefores about why people have ended up homeless; we just want to help and make a difference.
“We’ll carry it forward through all 2020 and plan to have collections on game days, both for food banks and a bucket collection.
“At the shirt launch the players all brought a can of food under the ‘One Can, Make a Difference’ project and we’ve taken what we collected down.”
The Rams’ new sponsors, Dean Austerfield and his wife Louise, are active contributors to the Resource Food Bank in Ossett, collecting food at their carpet and flooring shop at the Wellgate Centre in the town.
The Fusion Giving Food Bank is based at Empire House in Dewsbury and the Resource Food Bank distributes food from Christ Church South Ossett.
Chairman Mark Sawyer has also backed the Rams’ new initiatives.
Sawyer said: “The club should be at the centre of the community and we are good citizens.
“We will do all we can to help these good causes.”
Further information on the projects can be found on Dewsbury Rams’ official website.
© League Express (Mon 16th Dec 2019)