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Peabody residents pay tribute to late support worker with football fundraiser

Football Match

Peabody hosted a football fundraising tournament at Colchester Sports Park that saw more than 100 colleagues and customers from the specialist disability support service take part.

Published: 05/04/2024

This heart-warming event was held in memory of a Care Support Worker called Kesh, who sadly passed away last year. He worked for Peabody for around 20 years and loved playing football. Kesh’s wife and daughter helped organise the event and received a trophy in return.

Many of the tournament’s participants also wore armbands on which they wrote the names of other lost friends and family.

The match rules were redesigned so that everyone could take part regardless of their ability. Players could pick up and move with the ball or stand side-by-side in the goal. In the spirit of solidarity, Peabody’s Care Support Workers gave extra assistance and goal-scoring opportunities to customers who have a disability.

The tournament raised more than £120, with fundraising efforts continuing on a JustGiving page. The proceeds will benefit two charities that were close to Kesh’s heart - CALM (Campaign Against Living Miserably) and Battersea Dogs & Cats Home.

Care Support Workers help people to live their best lives by supporting them to gain independent living skills and have new experiences. As well as being a remembrance match, this event enabled disability service customers to spend the day playing football with friends and discovering a passion for team sports.

Gigi, who lives in a Peabody supported housing scheme, said: “I scored a goal. Yay! I loved it.”

Neil, another person Peabody supports, added: “I really liked the football match. It was like being in West Ham, my favourite team.”

Sue Allison, Head of Services for Disabilities at Peabody, said: “Kesh was a beloved member of our team who had such a huge impact on the lives of our customers and those he worked with. Today’s event was a wonderful celebration of his life and despite the reflective occasion, it was also a joyous day filled with fun and laughter.”

Stephen Burns, Executive Director of Care, Inclusion and Communities at Peabody, said: “Events like this reflect the spirit of inclusivity and community that is so important in our care and support services. We believe every moment brings opportunities to improve our customers’ lives and independence, and it’s been heartwarming to see this in action today.”

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