Heart of Midlothian F.C. announced a ground-breaking new partnership with Save the Children.
A group of anonymous Hearts-supporting businesspeople contacted the club’s owner, Ann Budge, several months ago with a view to offering financial support. The upshot was a unique deal whereby what Budge confirmed as a “significant seven-figure sum” will be split between the charity and football club. Hearts will become the first UK side to carry the name of a worldwide charity on their home and away tops having rejected standard shirt-sponsorship opportunities.
The donation brings investment equivalent to that enjoyed by the country’s top Scottish Premiership clubs and will provide critical financial support for the continuation of the club's impressive revival. It will fund work both on and off the pitch, as key infrastructure is repaired and the club’s Academy programme that will produce the stars of tomorrow is strengthened.
A separate donation from the benefactors will enable Save the Children to deliver much-needed support to children and families throughout Edinburgh in a manner that is wholly complementary to the activities of the Big Hearts Trust.
This landmark collaboration with Save the Children will provide basic household essentials for families with young children, as well as delivering family-focused support that enables children to get the most out of school. Big Hearts Trust will also receive a donation to fund their work within the local community.
Ann Budge, Chair and CEO of Heart of Midlothian FC commented: “The benefactors are wholly supportive of the way in which the club is being rebuilt and of the values that underpin its activities. As the team is restored to its rightful place in the SPFL, we can use the magical formula of football to enhance the lives of children and families in the community. It’s a perfect match.”
Neil Mathers, Save the Children’s Head of Scotland said: “To have Save the Children’s name on Heart of Midlothian FC football shirts is an absolute honour – and a perfect match for our charity. It’s a fantastic opportunity for Save the Children and will allow us to reach many more children across Edinburgh, helping them to get the best start in life and achieve their potential."
Ann Park, Head of Commercial Operations at Heart of Midlothian FC added: “The decision to donate money in this way has been inspired by the ethos of community that the new regime at Tynecastle has been working so hard to build and which is now deeply embedded in the club and, of course, by the work undertaken by Save the Children.
"This is an outstanding act of philanthropy that provides the equivalent commercial benefits to the club for naming rights on the shirt and supports the work of Save the Children in the Edinburgh community.”