I am sure you will have heard Friday’s announcements by the RFU and the government. The RFU has declared that no more rugby below the English Premiership will be played this season and the government has ordered that all pubs, bars and clubs close indefinitely after Friday 20 March. As a consequence, all rugby related activities will cease and the club’s bars will remain closed until further notice.
As will be the case for sports clubs and small businesses throughout the country, these measures will have a considerable impact on the financial position of Firwood Waterloo FC. The Board’s overriding priority is to ensure the club survives this very challenging period and emerges ‘at the other end’ intact and able to commence business as usual. The club’s income will diminish to virtually nothing during the closure period and the Board is looking at all the different ways in which costs can be cut. Various government funding streams that were announced by the Chancellor of the Exchequer are also being explored that will hopefully provide cash grants to the club and protect the club’s employees. Furthermore, we have been able to secure vital funds from the women’s section and the 200 Club that will provide some buffer and I know that Kevin Brookman is developing a fundraising initiative involving the players and parents of the Minis & Juniors Section. I am also very grateful to the Dublin ‘tourists’ who donated their deposits to club funds on hearing of the cancellation of the tour. This is all vital and is testament to the willingness of everyone pulling together to confront the challenges ahead.
Whilst the Board is committed to exploring all avenues of external funding, to survive, we are also going to rely on the generosity and support of the club’s members. As a starting point, would you please consider joining the 200 Club at a cost of £5 per month? If 100 new members join the 200 Club this will generate an additional £500 per month or several thousand pounds over the closure period. If you want to donate more through the 200 Club that would be gratefully received! A link to the 200 Club application form can be found by clicking here
I will write to members again in the near future with other ideas for how you can support the cause. In the meantime, if any members have suggestions about how to generate additional funds in the current climate, please email firstname.lastname@example.org who will forward your ideas to the appropriate Board member. When the government relaxes social distancing measures, we will organise volunteer events for members to assist with maintenance and improvement tasks around the club.
In the meantime, I ask you all to keep safe and please get in touch if you need any help or support over the coming weeks and months. The strength of the Waterloo community has been very evident both on and off the pitch this season and I am sure this spirit will help us to navigate the challenges that the immediate future will bring.
With best wishes