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My Name'5 Doddie Announced as Charity Partner for British and Irish Lions Trust

13 February 2024

The British & Irish Lions Trust has today announced its five charity partnerships all of which have rugby at the heart of what they do and make a real impact on communities.

  • My Name'5 Doddie Foundation
  • Dallaglio RugbyWorks
  • LooseHeadz
  • Matt Hampson Foundation
  • Wooden Spoon

The two-year partnerships will allow the charities to use The British & Irish Lions digital platforms and the Lions Charitable Trust branding for promotion. The Lions will also collaborate with the charities on fundraising and awareness events. In addition, merchandise from the Lions Tour to Australia, signed by the 2025 squad, will be provided to each charity for auction.

Ben Calveley, British & Irish Lions CEO, said,One of the key objectives of The British & Irish Lions is to have an impact off the pitch as well as on the pitch, and we are proud to be partnering with five incredible charities who all have a connection with rugby at their core. We look forward to supporting these charities and highlighting the important work they do.”

Gavin Hastings, British & Irish Lions Trust Chairperson, said, “The Lions charity programme was first established in 2021 and has been a great success. It is a privilege to announce the five charity partnerships today and we are looking forward to working closely with each of these outstanding charities to support them raise much-needed funds for their charitable causes.”

My Name’5 Doddie Foundation

My Name’5 Doddie Foundation was founded in November 2017, following former Scotland international Doddie Weir’s diagnosis with motor neuron disease (MND). Doddie Weir earned 61 caps for Scotland, along with representing The British & Irish Lions on their 1997 Tour of South Africa.

The Foundation aims to raise funds to aid research into the causes of MND and investigate potential cures, and to make grants to individuals suffering from MND, to enable them to live as fulfilled a life as possible. To date, My Name’5 Doddie Foundation has committed over £11 million to MND research, as well as providing grants to support people living with the disease.

Jill Douglas, CEO, My Name’5 Doddie Foundation said: “Partnering with The British & Irish Lions Trust in 2021 was an incredibly significant moment for My Name’5 Doddie Foundation, and one that meant a great deal to Doddie too. To be asked to be a charity partner again for the 2025 Tour to Australia is an honour and one that will make a real difference as we seek effective treatments to MND. We’d like to thank The British & Irish Lions Trust for their ongoing support and look forward to creating an exciting calendar of activations with them.”

Dallaglio RugbyWorks

Dallaglio RugbyWorks was founded by former England international and three-times Lions tourist Lawrence Dallaglio. The charity grew out of Lawrence’s vision to offer a long-term skills-development programme for young people, based on the values of rugby. Each year, it helps hundreds of teenagers outside of mainstream education to develop the skills they need to get into sustained employment and training.

Zenna Hopson, CEO, Dallaglio RugbyWorks said: "We are thrilled to embark on this incredible journey as a new partner of The British & Irish Lions Trust. Together, we are aligned in our values, our mission, and also the power of rugby to make a lasting impact for young people, fostering resilience, and positive change. This partnership symbolises our shared commitment to harnessing the transformative spirit of the sport, creating a legacy that extends far beyond the field, to ensure that despite our young people being excluded from school, they will not be excluded from society.”

LooseHeadz

LooseHeadz is rugby’s mental health charity on a mission to place a mental health lead in every rugby club around the world, using rugby as a vehicle to tackle the stigma and help the rugby community talk openly about what can be a challenging subject.

The charity provides each partner rugby club with a toolkit of free resources to support the mental fitness of players, coaches and supporters. LooseHeadz currently works with around 1,000 rugby clubs in 20 different countries to help get people talking and #TackleTheStigma.

Rob Shotton, Co-Founder, LooseHeadz said: “LooseHeadz started as a conversation at the end of our local rugby club bar whilst watching the Lions Tour of New Zealand back in 2017. Just 6 and a half years later, to partner with the Lions is a monumental milestone in our journey. When we first penned our ambitious 10-year business plan, the vision of joining forces with the Lions for this Tour was a cherished dream. And now, as this dream becomes a reality, it stands as our crowning achievement. This partnership, deeply rooted in the very essence of rugby, ignites our fervent belief that alongside an organisation as iconic as the Lions, we can take LooseHeadz to the next level. We’re excited to join the pride and tackle the stigma together.”

 
Matt Hampson Foundation

The Matt Hampson Foundation inspires and supports young people seriously injured through sport. Through expert physiotherapy, specialist personal training, wellbeing support, mentoring and advice, the Foundation helps people with life-changing injuries to get busy living again.

The Foundation was established in 2011 by ex-England and Leicester Tigers rugby player Matt Hampson OBE, who himself experienced a life-changing injury in 2005 leaving him paralysed from the neck down, aged just 20.

Matt Hampson OBE, Creator of Matt Hampson Foundation said: “We are incredibly grateful and excited to be named as an official charity of the Lions Trust. As rugby fans, it means such a lot for us at the Foundation to be involved with a name known throughout the world and we look forward to working closely with the team to increase awareness of both our Foundation and the Trust as well as, of course, supporting the squad on their 2025 Tour.  The British & Irish Lions stands for so much that is good about the game of rugby and their values of respect, unity, integrity and friendship reflect how our Foundation works to bring people together in a special and supportive community.”


Wooden Spoon

Wooden Spoon, the children’s charity of rugby, aims to positively transform the lives of vulnerable children and young people through the power of the rugby community. Projects include specialist playgrounds, sensory rooms for children with autism, out of school educational programmes and specialist adapted sports equipment.

Sarah Webb, CEO, Wooden Spoon said: “The British & Irish Lions gravitas in the rugby community is legendary and this partnership’s endorsement of Wooden Spoon’s grant making activities, really bolsters the ambitions of our volunteers and supporters. The Lions embodiment of coming together to support each other to succeed, resonates deeply with Wooden Spoon’s own community who tirelessly raise awareness and funds to positively transform the lives of children and young people facing disadvantage, through the power of the rugby.”

My Name'5 Doddie Announced as Charity Partner for British and Irish Lions Trust
My Name'5 Doddie Announced as Charity Partner for British and Irish Lions Trust

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