GF Community Foundation delivering ‘Summer of Sport’ for North East children

GF Community Foundation is proud to be delivering a “Summer of Sport” for children and young people through a major investment.

The £8,000 project will provide more than 1,000 children with affordable, quality and safe sporting activities for a total of 3,000 hours.

The Foundation will partner with local sports clubs, community groups and venues in its four areas of operation to deliver its largest project to date, including Seaham, Easington Lane, Hetton, East Durham and Spennymoor.

Tom Lavender, Group Foundation Manager, said: “We have been working in partnership with local sports clubs and community groups to deliver affordable and accessible sports programmes for children aged 7 – 11.  This summer, we will be going one step further by working with other established sports groups and clubs including Spennymoor Town FC and CNS Sports Stars to deliver two weeks of top-quality experiences for our target demographic in our areas.”

The sports will include football, cricket, hockey and many more fun activities in Covid-secure environments, delivered by Foundation specialists.

Additionally, the Foundation will be giving further support to summer programmes already being delivered at Hetton Lyons Cricket Club, Whitworth Park Academy, Spennymoor Youth and Community Centre, Tudhoe Youth and Community Centre, Haswell Mencap and Seaham Park Cricket Club.  These funds will be allocated to providing packed lunches, extra coaches, trophies and specialist places within the programmes for selected groups.

The Foundation’s own sport weeks will be priced at just £10 per place for the full week, whilst the places the Foundation has secured at existing sporting programmes will be provided for specific individuals who would not be able to access them otherwise.

Lavender continued: “This is the first large-scale project for the GF Community Foundation and we’re thrilled to be supporting over 1,000 children within the local area. By providing this additional funding and support to local groups, more children are able to get involved this summer.”

Find out more about the Foundation and the great work they do in the community.

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Paul JohnsonGroup Financial Director

Paul Johnson is very much a home-grown talent.

He joined Great Annual Savings Group in its infancy, fresh from a youth career as a professional footballer with Hartlepool United.  He quickly established a reputation within the business and aced all required accountancy qualifications in the space of four years to become the Group’s Management Accountant.

Several successful projects later, Paul was promoted to Head of Finance.  When the former FD left GAS, he took on the mantle of the business’ most senior finance professional; boasting a string of incredible achievements all under the age of 30.


“I have witnessed phenomenal growth at the Group over the many years I’ve worked here and I’m looking forward to guiding the Group into an exciting new chapter.”

Interesting fact:

Paul made his professional debut for Hartlepool United against Bournemouth in the Football League.  Some say Danny Ings still resides in his pocket to this day.