Charlton Athletic celebrated a quarter century of pioneering equality and inclusion work on Saturday March 11th 2017.
Twenty five local schools and community groups – celebrating 25 years of CARE - joined members of the Charlton family to parade through Charlton before the club’s game against Walsall.
Hundreds of people from across Royal Greenwich joined the parade, in a colourful, vibrant display of banners and music, before being presented on the Valley pitch with the message “All Different, All Special, All Together”.
RWB Day was organised by Dr Michael Seeraj and Vikki Moorhouse from the Charlton Athletic Community Trust and CAFC Player Liaison Officer Tracey Leaburn.
Speaking at the event, Tracey said “I just want to thank everyone who came together to make this such a special day. Today’s event has really highlighted the positive values and deep roots our club has.”
“I think the young people took a valuable message from the day and had a lot of fun. One of them even told me it was the best day of his life!”
In the run-up to the event the club and CACT have been hosting diversity seminars at The Valley, reaching 330 young people from 11 local primary schools. Kick it Out, Show Racism the Red Card, Charlton coaches and players from the first team, women’s team and academy joined the seminars to share their experiences.
Formed on the return to The Valley in 1992, CARE is a unique partnership between the Royal Borough of Greenwich, Charlton Athletic Football Club and Community Trust, Greenwich Leisure Limited (GLL) and a network of other local community groups and voluntary sector organisations to tackle discrimination and build positive relationships between groups from different backgrounds.
With best wishes received ahead of the parade, from Baroness Doreen Lawrence and Lord Herman Ouseley, Dr Michael Seeraj, Head of Equality, Diversity & Inclusion at CACT said: “We’ve come such a long way in 25 years of CARE using the power of football to promote equality and tackle discrimination.
"It’s a great milestone to reach, however, in the current climate there is still much to be done. We are immensely proud to lead the way in this area of work, and to be the only project of its kind in professional football.”
“We look forward to continuing our long standing and valuable relationship with both the Club and the Royal Borough of Greenwich, who have both provided invaluable support over the years.”