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Autotrak and Oxford United Women Support Ronald McDonald House

Autotrak's great gesture helps raise awareness of a great cause

3 February 2021

Oxford United are thrilled to announce that Ronald McDonald House Charities will feature as the new back of shirt sponsor for Oxford United Women this season.

The sponsorship has come from an amazing source in Michael and Maria Fox, owners of Autotrak, who have 30 years’ experience in supplying temporary trackway, pedestrian walkways and marquee flooring and matting for events and festivals. Being huge supporters of the club, Michael and Maria have sponsored the back of the Oxford United Women’s shirts this season but have humbly chosen to display the charity logo on the shirt to help gain exposure to a local initiative.

Michael Fox told us, “It’s fantastic to be able to support the Oxford United Women side again this season. They have decided to support a great cause in Ronald McDonald Charities, it was great to meet Nathan and find out about all the good work they have been doing and wish them all the luck in the world with the brilliant brand-new facility, we will definitely be taking up his kind offer of a tour of the house when the situation allows us.

“Obviously, this season has been very stop start for girls, but they were playing some great football before the postponement, let’s hope they can get back playing soon and secure that promotion we know they deserve”.

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Ronald McDonald House Charities UK is an independent charity that relies on the continuous support and generosity of volunteers, fundraisers and donors to keep up to 6,000 families close to their sick children in hospital each year. They have been operating for over 30 years offering free ‘home away from home’ accommodation to families with children in hospital. Having a child in hospital is an unimaginable and stressful time for all concerned, so Ronald McDonald House Charities aim to ease some of the burden by providing a space for families to rest while their child receives treatment.

In April 2020 they opened a brand new 62 Bedroom House, replacing the 17 Bedroom facility that had operated since 2007. This purpose-built House supports families with children in the Oxford Children’s Hospital, the Critical Care Unit, and the New-born Care Unit.

Able to support 1,000 families each year with their 62 bedrooms, 8 kitchen areas, laundry facilities, day rooms and a wonderful enclosed garden, they operate every day of the year ensuring that families have somewhere to escape from the hospital wards and look after themselves.

The Oxford House Community Fundraiser Nathan Swift shared the excitement that this sponsorship has created:

“We are incredibly grateful to Michael and Maria for presenting us with this opportunity and thank them for their generosity. This is a fantastic partnership as Oxford United Women have already supported us during 2020 with some amazing fundraising. Together with the RTC they raised nearly £5k with their 2,600-mile challenge. We have recognised their outstanding contribution with a room sponsorship for 2021 and their name sits proudly on the door of our Iffley Bedroom.

“The last year has been tough for everyone; but as a charity we must keep going, ensuring that we can still provide our essential service. Support from the community helps us keep the doors open and lights on and makes partnerships like this even more valuable. We are proud to be on the back of the Women’s kit and look forward to a great partnership moving forward.”

If you would like further information on how you can support them, please contact their Community Fundraiser Nathan for a chat. Nathan.swift@uk.mcd.com

Ronald McDonald House Charities were chosen by Michael and Maria because of the work the Women’s team and Girls Regional Talent Club (RTC) conducted during the first lockdown.

Oxford United Women’s’ manager Liam Gilbert commented on the new sponsorship. “It’s a brilliant gesture by Michael and Maria at Autotrak. It’s great that they’ve chosen Ronald McDonald House, as the RTC and first team players managed to raise some money for them during the summer when we did the sponsored walk, completing 2,600 miles worth of distance in 7 days.

"It's also important that we recognise the work that Lauren Hayes has done on this. She has driven this from inside the club and I think it highlights the beliefs we have within the club and the way that everyone got behind this initiative to support the local community."

Lauren, Club Captain of the Women’s team, added  “It’s a fantastic charity and cause giving families access to accommodation when they need to support their young children in hospital - whether it’s getting a place to stay right next to the John Radcliffe or another site locally.”

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