For the 1st time in UK football history a club will have a national charity as their jersey sponsor after Heart of Midlothian announced Save the Children as their sponsor for next season. The ground-breaking partnership will see the charity’s logo on the home and away jersey for the next 3 years.
The structure of the ‘seven-figure’ deal is unique as well with it being funded to by a group of anonymous Hearts supporters in the business community offering the financial support for both the club and charity.
“The benefactors are wholly supportive of the way in which the club is being rebuilt and of the values that underpin its activities,” Ann Budge, Chair and CEO of Heart of Midlothian FC commented on the team’s official website. “As the team is restored to its rightful place in the SPFL, we can use the magical formula of football to enhance the lives of children and families in the community. It’s a perfect match.”Hearts will return to the Scottish Premier League next season after easily winning the Championship, having only lost 1 match to date. The promotion is the first step in restoring the team image that was tarnished under former owner Vladimir Romanov, who allowed the team to go into administration.
The team has worn a blank jersey this year. During the Romanov era they had controversial payday loan company Wonga as their jersey sponsor.
The jersey sponsor is not the only 1st for the club. Hearts were the 1st in the British professional game to adopt the living wage for all employees. Other clubs, like Chelsea Football Club, have since followed that lead.