LGBT+ charities net Paddy Power donation

14 Jun 2018

By: Sport Industry Group

Russian World Cup goals will directly fund initiatives to make football more inclusive to the LGBT+ community, with bookmaker Paddy Power set to donate £10,000 for every goal scored by the FIFA World Cup host nation.

The donations will go to a number of causes dedicated to making football more LGBT+ inclusive, with Paddy Power committing to a guaranteed minimum donation of £50,000, as part of the campaign developed by Synergy. 

Working in partnership with Attitude magazine’s Foundation, Paddy Power’s donations will challenge LGBT+ prejudice on and off the field, support footballers and those in the game in coming out, fund educational programmes in schools and colleges and make grass-roots teams safe spaces for LGBT+ players.

Ex-Olympian Caitlyn Jenner, rugby league player Keegan Hirst, swimmer Mark Foster, international rugby referee Nigel Owens, England women’s internationals Lianne Sanderson and Jordan Nobbs, England cricketer Danni Wyatt, actor Christopher Biggins and choreographer Louie Spence have all revealed themselves to be “Rainbow Russians” and are urging the LGBT+ population to stand in solidarity with the Russia team, via social media. 

A spokesman for Paddy Power commented on the campaign: “When Russia Put-in a goal, we’ll Put-in £10,000 to Attitude magazine’s Foundation, who will use the funds to make football more LGBT+ inclusive. I cannot wait to see the LGBT+ community get behind the Russians - or the Russians’ baffled reaction!”

Darren Styles OBE, publisher of Attitude, added: “When Paddy Power approached us with this idea we leapt at the chance. The LGBT+ community has a long history of reclaiming and adopting behaviours, words and styles that were intended to discriminate against us, so for this tournament we’re adopting Russia.

“The World Cup is meant to be about inclusivity, but thanks to the hosts - and those who chose the hosts - this tournament (and the next, in Qatar) is taking place in a nation with laws that discriminate against the LGBT+ population. 

“This is completely unacceptable and, therefore, we welcome the opportunity to benefit from Russia’s success and make unwitting allies of their national team. It will be hugely satisfying to see a goal from Russia send a message of equal love.”