How Sheffield United are showing solidarity with the local community during troubled times

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On Good Friday morning, as staff at a local food bank began preparing the parcels they planned to deliver over the weekend, several large packages arrived via courier from Sheffield United.

They contained Easter eggs and mugs, which the club had purchased to sell to supporters over the Bank Holiday period. But with English football in lockdown and Bramall Lane’s superstore closed, the novelty items were heading for the dustbin until the decision was taken to donate them instead.

“It’s only a small gesture,” Dave McCarthy, United’s operations director, said. “But hopefully it’s one that that will bring a little bit of cheer to people and give them some enjoyment.”

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Despite shutting their doors during the coronavirus crisis, United’s staff have spent the past couple of weeks doing what they can to try and help those affected by the pandemic.

Hand sanitiser and other cleaning equipment bought to help employees, including manager Chris Wilder and his players, stay safe before they were ordered to work from home last month have been handed to Sheffield City Council for use in its sheltered and independent living schemes while members of the first team squad are recording video messages to support United’s nominated charities.

Fans are also being encouraged to provide items for use by the S2 Food Bank, which is run by a network of community and faith organisations to help the needy living in areas around United’s home ground. Its website provides details of how to donate commodoties including tinned food and toilet rolls.

Other gestures made by the Premier League outfit include making their stadium car park available for use on a free of charge basis for NHS staff and granting employees unable to perform their regular duties permission to volunteer for projects designed to help the fight against the respiratory disease.

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"The club are pleased that these chocolate Easter eggs and mugs will be put to good use and we hope the youngsters receiving the goodies enjoy them, along with their families from the local area, stay safe and well,” McCarthy added.

Sheffield United are trying to do their bit on and off the pitch: Clive Mason/Getty ImagesSheffield United are trying to do their bit on and off the pitch: Clive Mason/Getty Images
Sheffield United are trying to do their bit on and off the pitch: Clive Mason/Getty Images

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