Premier League support for Samaritans at Burnley FC

Rivalry on the pitch was briefly set aside at Turf Moor on Saturday as players from both Burnley FC and AFC Bournemouth warmed up in Samaritans’ t-shirts to promote the charity’s life-saving helpline.

The Clarets came out 3-2 on top in the game but awareness-raising activities throughout the ground made sure that the chance to help others was also a winner.

Fans gave generously to bucket collections and VIP guests showed their support in the James Hargreaves Stand and the 1882 Lounge, where former Claret Clarke Carlisle, Man of the Match Jeff Hendrick and ex-player Ian Cox also helped raise the profile of Samaritans’ support services.

Clarke Carlisle said: “Everybody needs to know that when you’re going through a tough time, when you’re believing those difficult thoughts in your head, Samaritans is there for you. Its trained volunteers will listen in confidence, without judging, and help you to find a way through. Football, which is so aspirational, is a fantastic platform to reach large numbers of people with that positive message.”

Volunteers from Samaritans’ local branch, which is based in Nelson and covers the Pendle, Burnley, Craven and Rossendale areas, chatted to fans and handed out information about their services and the wider work they do in the community.

More than 6,000 people take their own lives in the UK every year, three-quarters are men, and middle-aged men from poorer backgrounds are the most at risk. Samaritans’ We Listen campaign message, which was promoted at Turf Moor, is also supported through partnership working with Network Rail and the wider rail industry.

Samaritans volunteer and local Branch Director Ian Hartley said: “It was heartwarming to see the solidarity shown to us by everyone involved in today’s game. We’d like to thank Burnley FC for making the day happen and salute fans, players and staff from both Clubs for demonstrating so well how football can be such an incredible force for good.”

Anyone wanting to find out more about supporting Samaritans or volunteering can go to www.samaritans.org.  Look out too for the chance to help raise funds for Burnley’s local branch by bidding for some money can’t buy football prizes, including an exclusive behind the scenes visit to Sky’s cult Soccer AM show, and a signed pair of England and Burnley goalkeeper Tom Heaton’s gloves.

Whatever you’re going through, anyone can contact Samaritans for free from any phone on 116 123. This number is FREE to call and will not appear on your phone bill. You can also email jo@samaritans.org, or visit www.samaritans.org to find details of your nearest branch.

For more information, interviews and photos, please contact Samaritans’ Press Office on 020 8394 8300 or email press@samaritans.org.   

– ENDS –

Notes to editors:

  • Samaritans 20,000 volunteers responds to more than 5.4 million calls for help a year by phone, email, text, letter or face to face in one of its 201 branches in the UK and ROI.
  • Pendle, Burnley, Craven and Rossendale branch of Samaritans is based at 15 Market Square, Nelson, Lancashire BB9 7LP, tel 01282 694 929 (Local call charges apply)
  • Support Pendle, Burnley, Craven and Rossendale Samaritans by bidding to win an exclusive behind the scenes trip to Sky Sports Soccer AM show at www.samaritans.org/BFC
  • Samaritans works with Network Rail and the wider rail industry to reduce suicide in the railway environment.
  • Find out more about Samaritans’ We Listen campaign at www.samaritans.org/welisten