The London Irish Foundation will be launched today – 25 June – at a ceremony in the BT Centre in the City of London.
The new Foundation is the official charity of London Irish Rugby Club.
The new organisation will operate as a charitable trust independent of the club, as required by the Charity Commission, which has granted the Foundation registered charity status.
The Chief Executive of the new Foundation, which is based in Sunbury-on-Thames, is Andy Keast, formerly Head of Community at London Irish. Keast, who has previously managed at club and international level, including England A and the British and Irish Lions, said that the project will be driven by “community engagement”, which includes working with local authorities, councils, schools and businesses, YMCAs and housing shelters.
“This is an exciting development in the history of London Irish. The club has an established and successful record of community engagement,” Keast said.
“The Foundation will take that to another level and deliver projects that use the power of sport to make a lasting, positive impact on the lives of individuals, and build a meaningful and sustainable legacy for sport and education across the communities we serve.
Among the projects already undertaken by the Foundation are: Tackling Health in association with the Greggs Foundation; the BEAT the Street homeless project and the HITZ Learning Academy in association with Premiership Rugby and Land Rover. The Foundation has also supported the new National Health Service (NHS) “Lift the Baby” awareness campaign.