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BT Sport asks its supporters to #thesupportersclub for Steven Gerrard testimonial

Press Release   •   Aug 03, 2013 00:00 BST

Steven Gerrard’s testimonial will be shown exclusively live on BT Sport 1 at 11.30am on Saturday August 3 and BT will be using the landmark occasion to ask supporters to get behind The Supporters Club – BT’s exciting new initiative that uses the power of sport to help change the lives of disadvantaged young people. 

Fans can show their support by simply tweeting or retweeting #TheSupportersClub and for every tweet or retweet between 9am and 9pm on match day, BT Sport will give £1, capped at £100,000*. 

All of the money pledged for The Supporters Club will be spent to change the lives of young people here in the UK and in some of the world’s poorest countries. The money will be managed by Comic Relief and spent on projects providing coaches, mentors and teachers that young people so desperately need to help them achieve their goals in life. It is all about supporting the supporters. 

Aside from the fundraising, the testimonial promises to offer great entertainment for viewers as Gerrard’s Liverpool takes on Greek side Olympiakos against whom he scored a memorable goal against in Liverpool’s successful 2004 UEFA Champions League campaign. 

*BT Sport will donate £1 for the first 100,000 tweets and retweets of #thesupportersclub on Saturday August 3, 2013 between 9am and 9pm. BT will measure tweets using mass relevance and will discount people tweeting without a profile picture, people with no followers, people using profanity, known spam/problem accounts, non-English language accounts and auto feed tools. This is part of the £500,000 commitment that BT is donating through various initiatives. 

Notes to Editors 
The Supporters Club is a new initiative from BT Sport, using the power of sport to help disadvantaged people all over the world and here in the UK, including projects like the Riding for the Disabled Association. As part of the new series, The Supporters Club: Clare’s One Horse Race, follows the journey to help find the RDA a new horse. Watch it at 7pm, August 4, on BT Sport 1. 

What is The Supporters Club? 

The Supporters Club is an exciting new initiative which brings together BT, its sporting partners and Comic Relief, using the power of sport to help disadvantaged young people, both here in the UK and around the world. Money raised will be used to fund the coaches, mentors and teachers that these young people need to help them to fulfil their potential. It is all about supporting the supporters! 

How does it work? 

When customers sign up to BT Sport, they will be able to make a recurring £1, £3 or £5 monthly donation to The Supporters Club. It is easy to set up and hassle-free because BT collects the donations via customers’ BT bills. 

BT believes passionately in this, so not only will it be donating £500,000 from various initiatives to kick things off, but it will also match every £1 donated, to the first £1million. In addition, BT will cover the running costs of the fund so that 100 per cent of donations will go straight to The Supporters Club, which will be managed by Comic Relief. 

What kind of initiatives are going to be supported? 

The Club will support projects both in the UK and overseas that use the power of sport to help young disadvantaged people improve their lives. For example, projects that improve enrolment and achievement in school, reduce the levels of exploitation and abuse, secure jobs, improve health and wellbeing and that provide greater confidence and self-esteem. We’ll be regularly updating our website and making TV programmes, featuring projects funded by The Supporters Club money, which will be broadcast on BT Sport. 

When will you start taking donations? 

The Supporters Club started taking donations from Saturday June 22, 2013. Customers signing up to BT Sport through call centres, online on bt.com or online on The Supporters Club website at www.thesupportersclub.org, are invited to make a monthly recurring £1, £3 or £5 donation via their BT bill. People who have not signed up to BT Sport who wish to donate can do so through the website as well. 

Why is BT doing this? 

Business responsibility matters to BT and social responsibility is a central part of its business strategy. It sees The Supporters Club as a powerful way to work hand in hand with its customers and its employees to make a real difference to disadvantaged young people through the power of sport. 

Will BT make a profit on The Supporters Club? 

No – none. One hundred per cent of customer donations will go straight to The Supporters Club which will be managed by Comic Relief. BT will be covering all the running costs. BT will also donate £500,000 from various initiatives to kick things off and will be matching every £1 donated up to the first £1 million.