Supporting the Youth Academy Legacy
We want to ensure that supporters feel confident that the net funds raised are going to The Academy and therefore we have enshrined certain key principles to give you the confidence that this will be the case.
We see it is important that the organisation that runs and controls the funds raised is independent from the Club and is capable of demonstrating this.
Therefore the Committee running the Lottery has been reconstituted with an independent Chairman.
Chairman – Mick Maddocks: Mick has supported Blues all his life and is passionate about Youth Development. Mick said: “When asked to take this role I was delighted as I see this as a great way of putting something back into the Youth and leaving a lasting legacy. I hope by having a supporter chairing the committee this will give fans the confidence to invest in the scheme knowing all funds will be provided to help create that legacy for the Youth Academy.”
Committee - The committee is to be made up of four people in addition to the Chairman. Two of the panel will come from the Club to enable a full insight into the workings and requirements of Youth with Steve Kavanagh, Chief Executive and the Club’s new Head of Finance, Patrick van der Waag.
Steve Kavanagh said: “Youth Development is a vital part of any football club and ensuring it can be properly funded is essential. Having an independent Chairman demonstrates the desire to show that this is a partnership with the Club but not something we own or can control. Funding Youth Development, especially under the new EPPP rules is expensive and this is a fantastic way of giving supporters a chance to really feel ownership of players as they come through the ranks.”
The other two members will be from The Shrimpers Trust to ensure independence and also to provide supporters with an access point into how the Lottery is run and what the funds are used for. Bryan Woodford and Rob Craven make up the Trust members.
Bryan said: “Ensuring that supporters had a voice in how monies are spent was paramount and I was therefore delighted that the Club have agreed to the committee format to really allow us to show true independence in our actions and operations.”
Rob said: “Steps such as ring fencing the funds from the Club and ensuring controls such as signatories demonstrate the veracity of these actions.”
I passionately believe Youth Development can provide a long lasting legacy and support a strong and flourishing Southend United first team.
The costs of running a Youth Academy are growing and I see our challenge, along with you the supporters, to ensure that the Youth Academy is never seen as an easy and quick cost saving measure. The only way to do this is for us to raise and help fund any deficit that exist in the Youth Academy and then look to build and develop the Academy, targeting being a Category 1 Academy where we can compete with the best.
Yes, the Club has a part to play and already does so, but the pressure of modern football for funding to be provided to quick solutions mean investment in a five to ten year project can be seen as something which isn’t needed.
This is why I want the focus of the Lottery to be about providing a lasting legacy that is a flourishing Youth Academy, which will provide those players in the future. We, the supporters, can then rightly feel proud of the players we have funded.
Please join us and help provide for the future.
Application forms will be available to download shortly.