I have been telling the story recently (corny as it is) about an old chap who is making his way down a beach upon which 1000s of starfish have been washed ashore, throwing them back into the sea, one at a time. Someone spots this and says to him mockingly, “There are 1000’s on this beach, you’re going to make no difference at all.” In response, the man stoops down, and throws another into the sea…. “I’ll make a difference to that one!”

As I said, a little corny, but still, it is a powerful illustration of how a relatively under-resourced but determined operation can have a huge and literally life-changing impact on individuals. That is School of Hard Knocks. We know that we live in a profoundly unequal society and that the work before us is huge – but every day, I hear remarkable stories of vulnerable children and adults whose lives we are helping turn around.  

I cannot believe the journey we have made at SOHK over the past few years... we now work with over 700 children every single week of the school year on our ‘SOHK for Schools’ intervention, and hundreds more men and women who are long term unemployed. To continue our work and make it sustainable however, we need to secure regular income - hence the brand new ‘Friends of SOHK’ campaign.

We are looking for sign up 5,000 people between now and the end of the Rugby World Cup 2019 to become a ‘Friend of SOHK’, each giving a small amount on a monthly basis.

I know that there are hundreds of thousands of people who watched our work documented on Sky Sports over the years, probably most of whom don’t even realise we are a charity that is unfunded by Sky. And so I am sure that there are 5,000 people out there who will give less than a pint a month; really, it is just the cost of a flat white!

And so my question is…will you be one of the 5,000? If you love rugby and want to make the UK a fairer society, will you take five minutes to sign up? And if so, why not right now?!

Thank you so much. You will get regular updates on our work and receive a unique ‘Friends of SOHK’ pin badge which we hope you will wear with pride and help spread the word!


P.s You can find out all about our work here  - or if you have any questions, please email me at: [email protected]