AccessiBlues – the official Birmingham City FC Disabled Supporters Association
Ideas In Action are proud sponsors of AccessiBlues — the official Birmingham City FC Disabled Supporters Association.
Who are they?
AccessiBlues are a fantastic organisation that has recently secured charity status. Through fundraising, donations and sponsorships, AccessiBlues help disabled supporters attend Birmingham City football matches by securing tickets and providing accessible transport and equipment. Win, lose or draw, the group also organise a number of social events and activities throughout the year. They currently host a free coffee morning every Tuesday, and last year threw a free Christmas party for all their members.
Despite being a relatively new association, AccessiBlues have already put on a range of events and helped to bring disabled people together — and their efforts haven’t gone unnoticed. In addition to being runners up in the #FansForDiversity award at the 2018 Football Supporters Federation awards, the group also won ‘The Free Kick’ award collectively with disabled supporters of other teams, showing the footballing world that fans of all teams can come together in the spirit of football.
Who runs it?
AccessiBlues is run entirely by volunteers with a passion for helping disabled and vulnerable people. The group is chaired by Steve Portman, who has reached out to organisations and successfully secured funding to grant the group charity status. This achievement marks a new chapter for AccessiBlues, which they hope will expand their opportunities and encourage new members to join. With their newfound charity status, AccessiBlues are already seeking to add new events throughout the year, including meals out to nice restaurants, fun days out — and even short breaks away!
A word from the charity secretary
After joining the group on one of their coffee mornings last year, Linda Robbins, the current AccessiBlues charity secretary, soon became a regular attendant and a key component in the group’s development. Linda spoke to Ideas In Action exclusively about the past, present and future of the charity.
“My long term goal is to see AccessiBlues grow bigger and better and hopefully offer employment to those who are vulnerable and isolated.”
Linda told us about a current project: collecting items and making shoeboxes to present to the homeless at Christmas. The charity has been in correspondence with two local homeless charities about the project and aims to continue supporting causes for vulnerable people in the future.
It is projects such as these that bring the group closer together. This is the foundation of the AccessiBlues, which above all aims to bring a community of people together and help create friendships that last long into the future.
“We don’t see ‘disabilities’ in our group, we see people wanting to make friends and socialise — anyone is welcome.”
Ideas In Action have contributed £1000 to the AccessiBlues fund this year, as well as providing 10% discount cards to hand out to any members or associates. We believe the work they do is incredibly important to the local community and we look forward to supporting them and seeing how their foundation grows. If you would like more information, please feel free to contact Steve at [email protected]
To donate, you can visit the charity Just Giving page.