Date published: 10/04/2013
A youngster from Sunderland will come face to face with his heroes when he becomes an official Barclays Premier League mascot for Sunderland FC.
Joshua Convery is getting the chance to lead out the Black Cats against Everton thanks to a scheme being run by Barclays Spaces for Sports.
Joshua, from Washington, is a regular participant at the Barclays Spaces for Sports Sunderland FC Flagship site – the Washington Millennium Centre – and was picked by organisers there for the mascot role.
The nine-year-old, who is a member of the ‘Junior Black Cats’ (Sunderland FC‘s supporters club), described the opportunity as “really exciting”. Joshua comes from a family of long-time Sunderland supporters so cannot wait to lead out his favourite team against Everton.
Barclays Spaces for Sports has built 200 community sports sites in partnership with the Football Foundation. The programme uses sport to revitalise disadvantaged communities and tackle key social issues by helping young people develop a range of life and employment skills. It is part of Barclays community investment programme and wider Citizenship agenda.
Joshua’s favourite player − Sunderland striker Steven Fletcher − said, “It’s a fantastic opportunity for a young kid, who loves playing football, to be a Sunderland mascot for our game against Everton and I’m sure Joshua won’t forget it for a while.”
Karen Quigley, Centre Manager at the Sunderland FC Barclays Spaces for Sports flagship site said, “The site has a very profound impact on the local community and it is brilliant that Barclays Spaces for Sports are able to give the great opportunity of being a Barclays Premier League mascot to a young child at the Sunderland Flagship site.”
Joshua said, “I am really excited to be a mascot and I can’t wait to tell all my friends that I walked out onto the pitch at the Stadium of Light.”
Joshua will take to the pitch on Saturday 20th April at 3pm.