Bakkavor backs Newark Town Football Club's autism awareness message
A youth football team will continue to spread an autism awareness message after backing from a food company.
Two years ago, Newark Town under-tens Warriors raised more than £500 to pay for a new kit, which carried an autism awareness logo.
Now an under-12s team, and with many players outgrowing their shirts, funding for a new kit was required, which came from Bakkavor, Newark.
Nick Rhodes-Yeomans, whose 11-year-old son Bret plays for the Warriors, said: “Without hesitation Kerry Rigby backed our goal and jumped on board with our efforts of raising awareness for autism.
“They originally agreed to sponsor the back of the shirt to allow us to keep the autism logo prominent on the front, but with the great support they have shown the club, we decided that Bakkavor should be on the front too, side by side.”
Nick said he drew inspiration from his youngest son Chael, 6, who was diagnosed with autism aged two.
“As the assistant manager, its my responsibility to help find sponsorship for a new kit, which isn’t easy,” he said.
“Last time we raised the money from fundraising events, but this time we approached Bakkavor.
“They were a fantastic company to deal with and the support shown for the grassroots team has been second to none.
“The reaction to the kit is great too. We travel around Nottinghamshire and the logo always generates a lot of interest."
Kerry, the site employee forum representative at Bakkavor, said they supported the football club because they shared the company’s values.
She said: “When we were approached by Nick, we liked that his sponsorship opportunity covered much of the criteria of our values. It was a children’s team, it was in our site’s local community, they highlighted autism awareness and it was a sports team involved in local events.
“The boys were so happy and polite and they put their heart and soul into every game they play.”
As a gesture of their gratitude, the young footballers collectively gifted a signed shirt to Kerry, to celebrate the partnership.
Bakkavor said they would frame the shirt and display it at its Jessop Way site.