Benevolent Fund boost from RFL clubs
RFL member clubs are giving the RFL Benevolent Fund a significant boost by staging a massive fund raising effort throughout the Easter holiday fixture programme.
Some clubs are adding ¬£1 to the cost of a ticket at their games while others are staging other fund-raising efforts at their home fixtures.
The RFL Benevolent Fund was established as a charitable trust in 2004. The Trust's aim is to raise funds to enable it to support players whose lives are affected by serious injuries sustained playing Rugby League.
Phil Clarke, the former Great Britain and Wigan forward, who is the spokesman for the RFL Benevolent Fund, said: ‚"This is a fantastic gesture by the RFL member clubs.
‚"In the short time the fund has been operating we've succeeded in making a difference to the lives of the players who have been unfortunate enough to suffer a serious injury playing Rugby League.
‚"It's important that we not only carry on that good work but also build up the Fund's financial resources so that we are able to provide support for seriously injured players when they most need it.
‚"Now fans will have their chance to help make a difference to those unfortunate players by simply going to enjoy themselves watching people play Rugby League.‚"
During 2005, around ¬£60,000 was raised for the Fund and, besides the clubs' Easter funding-raising programme, it is intended to add ¬£1 to the cost of each ticket for both the Powergen Challenge Cup Final and engage Super League Grand Final on behalf of the RFL Benevolent Fund.
The Fund has made contact with nine ex-players with debilitating injuries and provided help.
This includes assistance towards specially adapted cars and wheelchairs; equipment at a spinal injuries gym; physiotherapy sessions and support for families of serious injured players in the form of accommodation and travel expenses.