The Yorkshire Cricket Foundation and Leeds Rhinos Foundation, the official charity arms of Yorkshire County Cricket Club and Leeds Rhinos, are teaming up this Christmas with homeless support charity Emmaus Leeds to collect donations for “The Foundation’s Box”.
Leading up to Christmas, the pair will collect cricket and rugby kit and equipment, as well as everyday apparel. All the donated sports items will be given to children who work with the foundations on their community projects. Any additional items will be donated to Emmaus Leeds to help with its mission to reduce homelessness and poverty.
Charlotte Jones of the Yorkshire Cricket Foundation said: “Both foundations deliver fantastic community projects that aim to solve local issues, with many operating in more deprived areas. It’s a great way, especially at Christmas time, to give back to those on our projects and also help Emmaus Leeds in its mission to fight homelessness.”
All cricket kit and equipment will be donated to Yorkshire Cricket Foundation’s project Wicketz, a community cricket programme which operates in Leeds, Bradford and Hull in areas with high levels of social deprivation.
Wicketz gives children from these areas the chance to play cricket and enjoy a meal or snack through its partnership with food distributor Fareshare.
Ben Fraser, Wicketz development officer at Yorkshire Cricket Foundation said: “Wicketz is completely free and always will be because we want remove any barriers that kids might face getting into cricket.
“The children at Wicketz will really benefit from any kit donated. It’s always good to bring new equipment into the sessions, to do something different, and a lot of our kids have really got a passion for the game now and are moving onto hard ball. So anything we can give to help them progress will be brilliant.”
The rugby kit and equipment will be distributed to junior players at the Rhinos’ network of Ambassador community rugby league clubs, which is a key arm of the charity’s Rugby League Development Plan with Mears Group to help improve standards and increase participation in the sport across Leeds.