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Communities United Success Story



From November 2020 to April 2021, Oldham Athletic Community Trust (OACT) were part of a ground-breaking project, titled Communities United, which was funded through the Government’s Faith, Race and Hate Crime Grants scheme and supported by the EFL Trust. The project connected families from different backgrounds with the aim of bringing them together, increasing understanding and awareness of social and cultural differences, challenging stereotypes, and uniting them through common interests and social action.

You can read the original press release by clicking here.

The innovative approach to the project saw OACT work closely together with colleagues from around the North West, with Rochdale, Salford City, Preston North End, Blackburn Rovers and Bolton Wanderers also selected for the project.

Our project was delivered in partnership with REEL CIC. REEL are a community interest company based in Oldham who are focused on helping make the local area a better, healthier and happier place to learn and live, giving communities a voice, offering the support and tools to help them engage in the delivery of positive provisions to create a more independent community and more positive future for all those involved.

Across the 6 CCO’s, the project engaged with 73 families across the North West Region and worked with a total of 257 individual participants from a number of different ethnic backgrounds and religions. From the 257 44% were males & 56% were females, with ages from under 10 to 55+ represented.

Below are some of the key stats from the project evaluation:

  • 77% of people agreed the programme was well organised and included fun activities.
  • 87% of people agreed that they had learnt more about their local area/community.
  • 70% of people agreed that the project had increased their knowledge and understanding of other cultures, backgrounds and/or religions.
  • 87% of people agreed that they now held a greater sense of belonging to their local area.
  • 73% of people agreed that by completing a social action project it has allowed them to improve their own local community.
  • 75% of people agreed that they are now more tolerant and accepting of others from different backgrounds, cultures & religions.

"It was a privilege to be involved within the Communities United project, it provided us with an opportunity to intensify engage with different parts of our local community in a completely new and innovative manner.


"I am immensely proud of the impact that the project had not only within Oldham but also across the North West as a whole.


"I'd like to also thank our project partner REEL CIC, who supported the delivery of the initiative. By working with an established and well respected local organisation they were able to provide an additional dimension to the project."


Martin Vose, OACT Head of Community

In conclusion, The EFL Trust and the 6 CCO’s have successfully used the power of the club badge and the hook of football to engage a diverse group of individuals and promote shared values among people of all backgrounds through sustainable social integration and meaningful civic participation.

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