Celebrating West Ham in the Community

West Ham United is celebrating its Foundation at tonight's game against Watford
Joint-Chairmen David Sullivan and David Gold celebrate the life-changing work of West Ham United’s community department...

It has been another outstanding year for our award-winning community department, the West Ham United Foundation, and we could not be prouder of the exceptional work we’re doing in the community.
When we took ownership of West Ham United back in 2010, we did so with a determination to serve the surrounding community and ensure that they too reap the benefits of this wonderful football club of ours.    
We said we wanted to do even more for local schools and businesses and extend our commitment to multi-sports, education and healthy living. Thanks to the inspirational drive of Vice-Chairman Karren Brady and new Chief Executive of our West Ham United Foundation, Joseph Lyons, the improvement has been a dramatic one.
Back in November, we celebrated 25 brilliant years of West Ham United community sport with a special Parliamentary reception in the House of Commons. 
There, Premier League Executive Chairman Richard Scudamore said what we have all long believed, that our community work is the very best in the land.     
“I don't think there's any single club I could name that does it to the depth and to the breadth and with the real commitment that West Ham do it. I commend it to you,” he said. 
“Some of their [West Ham’s] schemes are leading the way among the 161 clubs. That's the power of football. It's the power of the West Ham badge. It's the power of the Foundation and it's the power of those schemes.”
That speaks volumes for West Ham United, our ethos, our spirit and our unbreakable bond with the local community.
And so it is no coincidence that we recently won Community Project of the Year at the London Football Awards for hosting the ingenious Moore Family Foundation.
The Moore Family Foundation, our Principal Club Charity, is a brilliant example of football legacy in action, with thousands of students benefitting from this ambitious, forward-thinking project.
We started it back in 2014 to honour Bobby's memory in the way we at West Ham know best. To reach out to the local people who need us most. And the 16,000 Year 6 pupils who will engage with the programme is but a fraction of our community footprint, with in excess of 2,000,000 opportunities created for young people and adults to date.
Elsewhere, we are leading the way for prevention of Diabetes in Newham, which, sadly, is a national hotspot for the disease.    
We have joined forces with Newham Clinical Commissioning Group and Newham Local Authority and are investing £1M into a trailblazing scheme into a new Community Prescription programme
This will engage over 10,000 local residents at risk of Diabetes in the Newham, with the aim of stopping this reversible epidemic.
We are the only football club in the country working on such a programme on this scale.
We have always done and continue to do our utmost to tackle unemployment in east London. We strive to break down the sizeable barriers to employment and now boast our very own Applied Community Sports degree programme in association with the University of East London.
The inspiring, life-changing end result is this.
Our community output has grown by a massive 300 per cent over the past three years. We are now reaching out to well in excess of 20,000 individuals each year and we expect a further 100 per cent growth in activity over the next three years.   
It will only get bigger and better as we embark on our momentous move to Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in the summer. We are already involved in a number of brilliant projects and have attracted some 25,000 participants in events over the past 24 months on the Park.
It’s a fantastic opportunity to reach out to many, more thousand people and it’s an opportunity we plan to grab with both hands.
Our new home will bring life to this part of East London and will spearhead the regeneration of the local area, with West Ham United at its core.
We are committed to investing in not one, but two communities. It is imperative that we continue to support those most in need in and around the Boleyn Ground and to serve our expanded catchment in Stratford and the surrounding Olympic boroughs.
Over the next ten years, our Foundation aims to provide opportunities for a further one million people and deliver our longstanding commitment to create a tangible sporting legacy for the 2012 Olympic Games.     
These are truly exciting times for West Ham United, on and off the pitch.
Foundation Chief Executive Joseph Lyons spoke of his delight at the unwavering support from the Club:
“The Board’s continued commitment to helping the surrounding communities has enabled the Foundation to thrive in recent years. Their support and the power of the West Ham badge have ensured that the work we are carrying out in the community empowers local people and changes lives for the better.
“We are now reaching out to more people in the local area than ever before and working across so many innovative and creative programmes. Over the coming years this is only set to increase and long may it continue!”
The Hammers are set to warm-up in bespoke West Ham United Foundation T-shirts prior to kick-off tonight and supporters should keep their eyes peeled for our bucket collectors around the Boleyn Ground. 
All proceeds raised will go straight back into supporting our vast array of community schemes and will continue to positively impact the lives of the surrounding communities.