West Ham United Community Sports Trust's long-established outreach programme is proving hugely successful.
The Trust has partnered with a number of leading groups and programmes throughout east London to support campaigns that tackle anti-social behaviour, promote inclusion and inspire participation through access to elite sport.
As part of that long-term and multi-faceted commitment to prominent community groups, the Trust has the provision to offer West Ham United tickets at a discounted rate, to enable individuals allied to those schemes to see top-level football in person.
Flagship inclusion programme Premier League Kicks, Premier League 4 Sport and Tower Hamlets' Stifford Centre were each invited to take up the offer for the visit of Manchester City as part of the wider commitment to making football more accessible to all.
This comprises just one element of long-standing relationships with these initiatives and only participants were eligible for the discounted tickets.
As per the terms of the contracts with said partners, the tickets were offered at a discounted rate, but absolutely no tickets were provided free of charge and fans from all locations, background, race and religion were included.
Stifford Centre manager Salman Alam explained: "This is extremely important and useful for us to be able to reach out to our members. The partnership with the Club gives us access that we would not normally be able to offer to our local community. Football is a powerful tool and we use this to further engage and inspire our young people and adult members."
Head of West Ham United Community Sports Trust. Joe Lyons, said: "I am delighted with the success of our community outreach programme and it is fantastic that West Ham United are leading the way in supporting programmes that tackle anti-social behaviour and the other issues that affect our Borough and beyond.
"Our focus is on engaging with our community and making football more accessible to all and we want everyone from the local area to feel included at the Club. We are rightly proud of the positive feedback we've received from the campaign, which is essential for the Club to remain at the heart of the community. I look forward to welcoming more groups at the selected games throughout the season."
In addition to this key partnership agreement with Stifford, the Trust has also joined forces with the Bangladesh Football Association UK. Together, an agreement has been put in place to sustain a football strategy in Tower Hamlets, one that comprises of establishing a West Ham United programme of Bengali and Asian coaching education.
This scheme, however, extends far beyond traditional sport, by harnessing the power of football to engage individuals through education and employment.
Similarly, West Ham United have relationships with numerous local schools and clubs, as they have done for many years, that rewards their fantastic support with admission to certain home fixtures.
Elsewhere, the Premier League Kicks programme continues to thrive, with their work having proven most successful through the combination of coaching and access to elite sport.
Therefore, the Trust offers sports sessions across a number of venues across east London at no cost to participants, alongside the provision for match-day experiences for the young people and their families at selected games throughout the season.
Such schemes are commonplace among other Premier League clubs and West Ham United are proud of their work in this area and the outstanding results it produces.
For more information on the West Ham United Community Sports Trust, click here.