HUNDREDS of Five Towns’ youngsters are benefitting from the Castleford Tigers Trust’s community projects, but government cutbacks mean the Tigers now need a helping paw.
Alex Green, community manager of the Tigers Trust – which organises sporting activities and educational workshops in schools and the community – said the registered community charity needs more volunteers and sponsors to continue running much-loved classes.
The Trust’s free weekly ‘Learning Den’ – run by volunteers who teach years five to eight literacy, numeracy and ICT skills after school – had its government funding from the Playing For Success scheme scrapped last year.
Alex said: “These sort of workshops are becoming harder and harder to fund each year, it’s tough out there and government cutbacks mean we are no longer getting the support that we started with.
“Youngsters who come to classes get so much out of them, we have volunteers, including teachers from Brigshaw High School and our players, who teach the children in a relaxed environment in the grounds, which takes away the pressures of the classroom.
“At the moment we are keeping it going from Trust savings and community group donations but we would really like more volunteers and businesses to sponsor us, which would mean they’d get their logos on Trust merchandise.
“Our local Co-operative store in Kippax have kindly been supporting us for the past year – providing refreshments for the pupils, which is another way businesses can get involved.”
Last week, Trust bosses applied to Children in Need for a £100,000 grant, which will go towards this project and others run at local schools focusing on fitness, motivation and social issues, including alcohol abuse and sexual health.
The Trust is also helped out by a loyal group of fans – Tigers Together – which has raised £10,000 for the projects this year by holding fundraising events and amateur league tournaments.
Chairman Kevin Lloyd said: “Tigers Together’s remit is to support and promote Castleford Tigers RLFC and to further strengthen the bonds between its fans, businesses and the wider community.
“The Tigers are very much the heart of the community and help raise both the profile of the town, locally and nationally.
“The invaluable work of the Trust is well documented and we are pleased to be able to support the many community schemes which they run. We look forward to working with the trust in future.
“Fundraising is part of the support we offer, and to raise over £10,000 in a relatively short time is testament to the hard work of the group as well as the support for the club from the fans and wider community.”
Alex added: “Tigers Together is a brilliant group which has always been so generous in supporting us and given us a great line of communication with the fans and Five Towns’ residents.”
Visit www.castigers.com or call Alex on 07801 945252 for more information on after school clubs, dance academies, and this month’s three-day holiday camp running from October 29 to 31.