Wigan Warriors project Rugby Memories is appealing for votes after reaching the finals of the 25th Birthday National Lottery Awards - the search for the UK’s favourite ever National Lottery-funded projects.
Rugby Memories is competing in the Best Community and Charity Project category. They beat off stiff competition from more than 700 organisations to reach the public voting stage in this year’s National Lottery Awards, which celebrate the inspirational people and projects who do extraordinary things with the help of National Lottery funding.
The project with the most votes will be crowned the winner and receive a £10,000 cash prize, an iconic National Lottery Awards trophy and attend a star-studded glittering awards ceremony to be broadcast on BBC One in November.
In February 2018, Wigan Warriors Community Foundation (the official charity of Wigan Warriors Rugby League Club), launched a support group called Rugby Memories as a way to help tackle isolation and support those living with dementia. Reminiscence can be a powerful form of therapy for people with dementia, allowing them to access long-hidden memories and giving their families a glimpse of the loved one they knew before they became ill.
Wigan Warriors Community Health and Wellbeing Manager, Claire Taylor, says winning a prestigious National Lottery Award and having their work showcased on national television would be an honour.
She said: “It is brilliant to be recognised in the 25th Birthday National Lottery Awards in the Community and Charity category, as we have seen a profound impact on the community which we work in.
“Fans of rugby socialise through sport so this group has been formed to bring people from the community together and encourage social interaction to help combat isolation and loneliness for out participants. Please everyone vote for Rugby Memories!”
(A recent Rugby Memories event where the group visited a classic cars collection. Watch the video below.)
Jonathan Tuchner, from the National Lottery, added: “It’s thanks to National Lottery players, who raise more than £30 million each week for good causes, that brilliant projects like those in the finals of the National Lottery Awards are possible.
“Rugby Memories is doing an incredible job in its local community and the work they do is hugely impressive. They thoroughly deserve to be in the finals of the 25th Birthday National Lottery Awards and with your support they could be a winner.”
To vote go to lotterygoodcauses.org.uk/awards. You can also vote for the Rugby Memories campaign on Twitter by tweeting the hashtag #NLARugbyMemories. Voting runs from 9am on 24 July until midnight on 21 August.
The award categories reflect the main areas of National Lottery funding: heritage, sport, arts, culture and film, community and charity, sporting legend which will be decided by a public vote alongside lifetime achievement, young hero, special recognition, and twelve local legend awards, which will be selected by a panel made up of representatives from the National Lottery family.
The first National Lottery draw took place on 19 November 1994. The 25th birthday is a moment to celebrate the extraordinary impact The National Lottery has had on the UK and, most importantly, to say thank you to National Lottery players for contributing tens of millions of pounds every week to good causes.
Whilst The National Lottery is all about winning – with more than 5,100 millionaires created since 1994 – its primary purpose is all about giving. National Lottery players have raised more than £40 billion for good causes in the areas of arts, sport, heritage and community over the past 25 years. More than 565,000 National Lottery grants have been awarded since 1994, the equivalent of around 200 life-changing projects in every UK postcode district helping to strengthen communities, deliver sporting success, protect the environment, unleash local creative talent and look after the elderly and those at risk.
Remember, to vote for Rugby Memories, please click HERE.
You can also vote on Twitter by simply using the hashtag #NLARugbyMemories.
The Rugby Memories Group meet fortnightly on a Tuesday afternoon 2-4pm at Central Park on Montrose Avenue, Wigan. For more information please contact Claire Taylor: firstname.lastname@example.org