A football ground may not be considered the best environment for young people who suffer from autism, with lots of noise being generated and supporters getting excited in a good-natured way. However, autistic children often love football, and that led Tonbridge Angels to get involved with a local autism centre, and bring the joys of Longmead to a collection of its patrons- in a calm and enjoyable manner.
The Phoenix Autism Centre Tonbridge (PACT) saw many of its children, families and teachers invited to be guests of honour at Angels recent home against Harlow Town, with some of the children leading out the two teams. Afterwards, the party were able to watch the match in the relative calm of the Sponsors Lounge, which has a private deck overlooking the pitch.
PACT messaged the club afterwards to express their gratitude.
‘A HUGE thank you to everyone who supported PACT at the Tonbridge Angels FC Match this afternoon! We collected an amazing £173.04!! Thank you so much for your generosity, and special thanks to all the players and supporters for making our children and their families feel so welcome! Well done to Tonbridge Angels on your 3-1 win!’
Amy Weaver, Angels Director for Community Affairs who set up the afternoon, responded:
‘It was an absolute pleasure to have you all as our guests today. Hopefully some of the children can come and watch the team training in the evening in the summer, especially those who were unable to come to the game.’
Find out more about the work of PACT here.
Words and pictures courtesy of Jim Rowe at Tonbridge Angels.