FSIF FANS FUND onsıde| ISSUE 39 39 A NEW GENERATION OF YOUNG FANS IS ON THE CARDS FOR WOKING FC The Junior Cards Scheme encourages youngsters to attend games. T he Cards Trust, established in 2010, is Woking FC’s independent supporter’s trust and is the second largest shareholder in the club. In 2015, the Trust set about the reintroduction of a Young Supporters Club, which had not been in existence for almost a decade. Subsequently, the Trust developed their ‘Junior Cards’ scheme – a nod to the club’s nickname, The Cards (short for Cardinals.) The scheme aims to engage hundreds of young supporters, who had previously attended a game. Launched in November 2015, the scheme has as so far signed-up over 100 young supporters through the use of eye catching membership packs, as well as a number of junior and family fan-based events which create a real ‘day-out’ at a Woking FC. The scheme has brought so many young fans together that it is helping them to develop skills that life last them a lifetime. One parent recently approached the Trust to explain how since joining the scheme, their child – who had always found it hard to make friends – had become a ‘new person’, excelling in social situations. The Trust has been hugely successful so far and is keen to get even more youngsters involved, in the hope of encouraging more of the next generation to develop life-long links with the club. Phil Batts, who runs the Junior Cards Scheme, said, “We wish to see the Junior Cards go from strength to strength. We are confident that a concerted drive will double our numbers and take us over 200 members.” “On behalf of Woking FC I cannot thank the Premier League, who gave funding through the Football Stadia Improvement Fund, enough for playing a major part in launching the Junior Cards.” PREMIER LEAGUE FANS FUND The Premier League Fans Fund is a three-year, £3.5m, commitment from the Premier League to help improve the relationship between fans and their clubs, the way football supporters engage with each other and fans’ experiences of the game. These aims are achieved with the help of other football stakeholders who receive money from the Fund, which is delivered through the FSIF. As well as awarding grants of up to £20,000 to local fan groups, the Fund also gives money to several other members of the football family to allow them to carry out their vital work.