How K Foley fundraising helps people improve their lives through sport

Earlier this year, K Foley LTD CEO Kevin Foley took part in an epic charity adventure which saw him drive nearly 2,000 miles to raise money for Norwich City FC’s Community Sports Foundation.

Kevin covered a total of 1,800 miles as part of the Canaryball Rally organised by Credo Asset Finance and raised almost £5,000 with his teammate Ken Venables, to help disadvantaged groups have access to sport.

The Foundation helps thousands of people through its charitable objectives to drive inclusion for people with disabilities, boost mental health and wellbeing, and inspire disadvantaged people.

Here, the Foundation shines a light on just two of the people who have been helped by fundraising just like Kevin’s.

James Kidd 

Meet thirty-one-year-old James Kidd who has been attending sessions with the Community Sports Foundation for more than five years now.

James has global developmental delay and other associated learning disabilities, meaning he has previously struggled to engage in sport and socialise with people.

Looking for a way to support him, James’s parents, Richard and Lesley contacted the Foundation looking for an appropriate programme to help engage and support him.

James was advised to join the Adult PAN-Disability Football by our Disability Manager, Darren Hunter, with the programme offering a fun, competitive level of football to be involved in with people of similar abilities.

He’s now a staple member of the programme and has developed his footballing abilities greatly since starting.

He has also recently joined up to Realising Potential, a programme tailored to improving physical and social skills through various sports, activities, and workshops targeting teamwork, communication and life skills.

His father, Richard, believes Realising Potential has proven to be the best thing James has ever been involved in.

It has allowed him to mix with different people of all ages and abilities, and it has most importantly made him more confident and outgoing.

As part of the Realising Potential syllabus, participants can choose to take up a volunteering role, which James has been undertaking for the past five weeks. He is now a volunteer for the Realising Potential junior’s multi-sport sessions.

James told the Foundation: “It’s great to be helping others whilst learning at the same time.”

Ellie Dickinson, the Foundation’s Realising Potential Officer echoed the thoughts of James’s parents:

“I’ve seen a massive increase in his confidence and leadership skills. He’s become a vocal leader during volunteering sessions and has really found a passion for coaching the junior sessions as he’s now able to provide them with sessions he missed out on as a kid.”

Theo Lester

The Foundation say its programme has helped re-ignite the spark in a teenager with autism – giving him back the confidence and self-belief he had unfortunately lost.

Theo’s mum, saw an ad for the newly launched initiative advertised and got in touch.

Realising Potential, which is supported by Norfolk Hire, the Professional Footballers’ Association and our City Giving programme, offers a range of free support sessions to children and adults with physical or learning difficulties across 10-week blocks.

For Theo’s mother Bree, the Realising Potential opportunity couldn’t have come at a better time.

She said, “He had lost a lot of confidence and had been showing signs of anxiety and depression. The pandemic and resulting lockdowns then made these issues even worse.”

He switched to home-schooling and had even quit playing football – which had been “his life.”

Bree and Theo’s father Steve were hopeful that attending Realising Potential would restore Theo’s confidence and get him back to being social and active once more.

Ellie Dickinson said: “Initially, Theo was very nervous. At our first ‘getting to know you’ session he was very shy, timid and would not leave Mum and Dad’s side.”

The programme offered a number of opportunities across the week but Theo was adamant he only wanted to attend a single session.

As the weeks went by, though, his barriers began to fall.

Ellie noticed a growth in both his confidence and happiness; in particular, he would look forward to playing the games with two of the other boys on the course.

His parents were able to drop him off and leave him with the group for the duration of the session.

With Theo’s confidence and love for football back, he expressed interest in the possibility of getting involved with the Foundation’s volunteer football coaching programme.

Theo also now has ambitions of getting a part-time job at The Nest’s café.

Ellie added: “The Nest was initially a place he did not want to be at – it caused him anxiety and stress, but now, thanks to the Realising Potential programme, he now has aspirations to join the team here at The Nest.”

“It’s amazing to see the transformation that Theo has gone through. I’m so proud of him.”

Bree said: “He just needed that someone else to believe in him and tell him he’s good enough. I’m so thankful to Ellie, and everyone at the Foundation for giving Theo the support he has received through Realising Potential.”

Find out more about the Community Sports Foundation.

If you’d like to support Realising Potential, you can do so through our monthly giving programme, City Giving.


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