More than £23,000 has been raised to date by almost 500 of the Club's loyal supporters with individual donations varying from £5 to in excess of £500.
In recognition of this fantastic achievement, Chairman Raj Singh has agreed to match the total donated by supporters into the Scheme at midnight on 6th September - with a commitment that ensures every single penny of the combined donations will increase Dave Challinor's 2020/21 playing budget that was established by the Board during the early stages of the Covid lockdown.
The Chairman says “The generosity of our supporters during such extremely challenging times deserves to be recognised and I can assure all our supporters that every penny raised will increase Dave's playing budget to support him in pulling together a squad with genuine promotion potential.
“In fact, I have been so impressed by the commitment of the fans that I will match 100% of the total funds raised by the supporters as an additional donation towards the playing budget when the Scheme closes.”
The success of the scheme to date has, however, created a number of challenges in being able to deliver the original rewards that the Club agreed to offer individual supporter donations. These challenges have been exacerbated by the ongoing Covid protocols and directives that the Club must adhere to for the foreseeable future.
Acting Executive Director Martin Jesper explains “we have discussed the success of the scheme with organiser, Gary White, and we agree that our ability to offer a number of the packages set out within the original Budget Booster proposition is proving either impractical (for example: the numbers of supporters to attend post-match drinks with Dave Challinor; the ability to attend a pre-season photo shoot) or impact the Club's ability to sell match-day executive hospitality packages.
“As a result, we have felt it necessary to revise the rewards that will be available and we hope that our supporters will respect and understand our need to do so.”
The restructured packages includes:
1. All donations in excess of £100 will entitle the donor to the gift of a specially commissioned Club shirt which will include their name alongside other donors and will be available through the Club shop. The shirt design will be progressed once the Scheme closes and we are aware of the number of names to include. In addition, all donations in excess of £100 will entitle the donor to attend an open training day (when Covid restrictions allow);
2. All donations in excess of £50 will entitle the donor to have their name included on a specially commissioned Club shirt which will be available to purchase from the Club shop. The pricing of this shirt will be established once the Scheme closes and we are aware of the number of names to include. In addition, all donations will entitle the donor to attend an open training day (when Covid restrictions allow);
3. The prize draw offerings remain the same, with every contributor being entered into a prize draw where two lucky winners will be selected for a unique Pools experience:
o Starting with a training ground experience in the week leading up to a selected fixture, you (plus a guest) will join Dave Challinor as he discusses his plans for the weekend. You will watch the full training session, observe preparations and meet the entire squad;
o You will then be able to join Dave and the squad as part of the team and travel to an away fixture on the team coach;
o You will be able to enjoy a pre-match meal with the players and a post match de-brief as you travel home with the team;
o A signed shirt will be awarded to 5 runners up, and signed team photos awarded to another 10 runners up;
Supporters may top up their original donation, or make a fresh donation, by clicking on the following link https://uk.gofundme.com/f/pools-budget-booster.
Supporters who have already donated into the Scheme expecting to have a match day experience for 2 in the Executive Lounge, an invitation to the Chairman's Suite, a post match drink and chat with Dave or attendance at the pre-season photo shoot are asked to understand the challenges that the Club faces in delivering these rewards and opt for package 1 or 2 above (as determined by the amount of their donation). The opportunity to switch from the initial reward offerings to the above will be given to donors once the Scheme closes and the administrative process of contacting individuals progresses.
Administration of the prizes will follow the closing of the Scheme on 6th September. At this stage, we are therefore unable to confirm any dates when the prize draw offerings will be made available to winners.
Further details of all prize winners and rewards will be given once all donations have been collated, contact details verified and practical considerations around Covid compliance emerges in the coming weeks. The Club is keen to ensure that all prizes and rewards from this Budget Booster Scheme are honoured in the 2020/21 season so that the impact of any fund raising initiatives in future seasons is not adversely affected.