Marshall Fund inspires clubs to lend helping hand in return
One good cause led to another as the Charlie and Lesley Marshall Fund for Football, which made its annual donation to clubs, helped inspire a charitable effort in return to the Bermuda Emergency Fund.
Yesterday, the Marshall Fund for Football presented grants of $3,000 each to six clubs — Robin Hood (Warwick Archers and Warwick Bows), Devonshire Colts, St David’s, St George’s Colts, Dandy Town and North Village — and the Bermuda Referees Association.
The Marshall Fund’s goal is to improve the lives of individuals through football, inspired by Marshall’s long involvement in the game as a top referee for many years and also as the president of both the Bermuda Football Association and the Bermuda Referees Association.
The grants will support the purchase of kits, lighting for facilities, new goalposts for football programmes and equipment and gear.
“I have a passion for youth development, in football or any other sports, because I know from my own experiences that sports played a dynamic part in who I am today and what I have achieved in my 81 years on this earth,” Marshall said during a presentation on Wesley Street in Hamilton.
“Sports is everything, you can learn how to coach, prepare the fields, be an administrator.
“All the things to be successful you can learn through sports.”
The Marshall Fund was set up in 2007 with funds from the sale of his businesses, which included PM Limited.
“When we sold our businesses I always promised, especially when I was president of the Bermuda Football Association, that if I was ever in a position to make a sizeable contribution to help the development of sports that I would do so,” he added.
“We put the money in a fund and what it generates is dished out to the clubs every year. But they have to be accountable for it!
“We believe a good way for us to make a contribution is for young people to have the ability and the facilities to have the opportunities that we had.”
Marshall noted, also that having a wife who was understanding and supportive while he gave up many weekends and nights for football, was important also.
“She backed me up 100 per cent,” he stressed. “The family and the kids were certainly supportive, not only those in my own family, but all the people over the years who helped me in my career.
“I would encourage those Bermudians, particularly those who have been successful through sports to consider it.
“They could add to our fund which all goes back into the clubs.”
The Marshall family, and several of the clubs, also came together in May of this year, during the height of Covid-19, to raise $23,000 to donate to the Bermuda Emergency Fund.
Six clubs, Devonshire Colts, North Village Community Club, PHC, St George’s Cricket Club, Western Stars /Dandy Town and BAA, all made contributions to the funds to ensure that essential services could be delivered to those in need.
“We, as affiliates of the Bermuda Football Association, felt it would be a great opportunity at the time during the Covid-19 pandemic to work together on behalf of football in Bermuda, to give something back to our communities and assist those families and fans that have supported us through the years,” said Shervin Dill, president of North Village and a board member to the Marshall Family Fund, said of the Kicks for Football initiative.
“To have been able to provide them with basic necessities such as food, shelter and safety was an honour and a blessing for us to make a contribution to such a worthy cause.”