EVO-STIK League Southern Hitchin Town have handed over a cheque for £1000 to national stillbirth and neonatal death charity Sands.
The compassionate Canaries presented a giant cheque for the funds to the charity on Saturday before drawing 2-2 with Frome Town at Top Field in the EVO-STIK League Southern’s top flight.
Fans raised nearly half – £480 – when the club’s officials staged a ‘pay what you want’ fixture earlier this month for their 2-0 win over Kings Langley. The total was topped up with a further £100 from the Hitchin Town Supporters Club, another £120 from the club itself and a £300 donation from Canaries sponsors Mastercars Hitchin, Hertfordshire’s premier RAC approved prestige and sports used car dealer.
Originally planned for their game against Cirencester Town at the end of January before it was frozen off, the fundraising initiative was re-scheduled to help bring a positive end to the unfortunate Alfie Barker Twitter episode when the former dual-registered player mocked AFC Bournemouth’s Premier League footballer Harry Arter over his still-born daughter.
Hitchin Town and EVO-STIK League Southern chairman Terry Barratt is pictured, left, presenting the cheque before the charity’s press and PR officer Lee Armitt thanked supporters and everyone else involved in the fundraising effort.
He said: “Its fantastic news that the total donated to Sands is now £1,000. We are very grateful for your support, it is greatly appreciated.”
Sands chief executive Dr Clea Harmer added: “We’d like to say a big thank you to everyone at Hitchin Town Football Club. The funds raised will allow us to support parents whose babies have been stillborn or have died neonatally.
“As a charity we rely on the wonderful generosity of our supporters to continue our work. Sands operates throughout the UK supporting anyone affected by the death of a baby and promotes research to reduce the loss of babies’ lives.”
Barker has since apologised for his “moment of madness” after being banned by the FA until August. The Canaries and Codicote FC, who both held his registration before cancelling it for the offence he’d caused, are now planning to turn out against each other in a future fundraising friendly for Sands.