Red Army Marshalled to Lead the Community in the Fight Against COVID 19
As the country prepares for increasingly draconian measures in response to the growing spread of coronavirus, Aberdeen Football Club has marshalled its forces to support fans and the wider community.
The Club’s approach is two‐pronged: providing information to and engaging with people, particularly those in isolation, and offering practical support to those in need and, potentially, to the emergency services.
AFC Chairman, Dave Cormack, said: “Aberdeen Football Club has been at the heart of our community for over 100 years. Today, we stand ready to do whatever we can to assist the community in what is a rapidly escalating, unprecedented situation.
“Our response to the crisis facing us is one of solidarity and support. We have drawn up a battle plan which will allow us to provide practical support to those who need it most and to bring our fans and the community together in our fight against the virus.
“As the biggest Club in our region with a fantastic and loyal fanbase, we have a unique platform to connect with people of all ages, from all backgrounds across all parts of the city region and beyond. With over 100,000 people on our database, over 300,000 followers on social media and, through the reach of AFC Community Trust, interactions with thousands more, we are in a position to engage with the community through content that educates, comforts, reassures and even brings a smile to all those affected, but particularly those suffering from loneliness, anxiety and fear.
“In normal circumstances, we’re a daily topic of discussion and entertainment for supporters. As we face not only an as‐yet undetermined pause on football, but a much bigger global threat, we can provide familiarity in an unfamiliar world.
“Throughout our history, we have been supported by our revered and loyal Red Army, Standing Free every step of the way. Now, we will rally behind our fans and the wider community in their time of need.
“Alfredo Di Stefano once said that ‘Aberdeen have what money can’t buy, a soul, a team spirit, built in a family tradition’. By galvanising our fans and the wider community, we aim to build a Team Aberdeen approach to winning the war against COVID 19.”
With football, training and coaching suspended, the Club and its partner charity, AFC Community Trust, whose reach throughout the region is greater than it has ever been, have available resources, including 80 volunteers, who are standing ready to do whatever is needed.
This begins in earnest in the coming days when AFCCT will be working with Community Food Initiatives North East (CFINE) to make deliveries of food to areas where the Trust already works to reduce food poverty, supporting children during the school closures. The Trust is currently working through the details with CFINE with the aim of providing a delivery service five days a week operated by AFC and AFCCT staff and volunteers.
The Club and the Trust are also proposing the following:
- Deliveries of other essentials to those in need
- Regular check‐ins over the phone for those fans in isolation. This could be from staff, players, former players as well as coaches and volunteers.
- A morale boosting campaign to fly the flag for the Club and Aberdeen
- An on‐line campaign to promote local business and actively encourage fans to support these local businesses to help prevent them from going under
- Potential to open up the RDS Concourse as a testing facility
A dedicated email address has been set up for those wishing to contact the Club to find out more about the above initiatives. The address is : email@example.com.