By L.I.S.A Committee
On Monday 4th December we travel to London for the 2017 Football Supporters Federation Awards. L.I.S.A has been nominated for the Fans for Diversity award and is the sole representative in the category from the lower 2 divisions of the football league. It goes without saying that it is a huge privilege for us to be able to attend and we go with great pride in representing a supporters group from Lincoln City FC. When the awards night takes place the focus of the media will inevitably be on the award winners but whoever the award winner might be there is huge value in our inclusion. Our nomination and attendance provide us with an opportunity to meet with other groups keen to encourage a diverse mix of people through the turnstiles. Although the groups themselves represent different communities we are sure that we can learn from our collective experiences. Our fellow nominees are;
Encouraging and representing the interests of LGBT supporters are two London based Premier League groups namely the Proud Lilywhites (Spurs) and Proud and Palace (Crystal Palace). Just this weekend some of you may have noticed the rainbow corner flags at Sincil Bank in support of Stonewall’s Rainbow Laces campaign, raising awareness and tackling homophobia in the game.
Hailing from the West Midlands are two Championship groups encouraging supporters from ethnic minorities and all parts of their communities; namely Blues 4 All (Birmingham City) and Punjabi Wolves Supporters (Wolverhampton Wanderers). It is hugely important that clubs work towards better reflecting their local areas and last year Bradford City’s Bangla Bantams deservedly received the award for their ground-breaking efforts in West Yorkshire.
Last but not least, the Fans Supporting Foodbanks group are doing great work in Merseyside involving the fans of both Everton and Liverpool FC. As their name suggests this group are using the medium of football to encourage fans to help less privileged people in their communities put food on their tables, yet another fantastic cause.
Despite the differences in these groups they, like L.I.S.A, have a joint aim in that they seek to use the enjoyment of football to bring people and communities together. Whether it be to tackle the issues of homophobia, racism, sexism or inequality they are incredibly important causes and we support and congratulate them all. In promoting tolerance, inclusion and respect we look to maximise support for our club. It will only be by recognising the importance of these traits and in working together that we can ensure our football family embraces everyone. Up the Imps.