SRU announce £500,000 hardship fund for clubs impacted by Coronavirus

Premiership sides GHA and Currie Chieftains in action earlier this season. Image: © Craig Watson - www.craigwatson.co.uk
Premiership sides GHA and Currie Chieftains in action earlier this season. Image: © Craig Watson - www.craigwatson.co.uk

THE SCOTTISH RUGBY UNION has set up a £500,000 Club Hardship Fund (CHF) which will offer financial assistance to grassroots clubs facing cashflow and immediate financial challenges through the impact of Coronavirus (Covid-19).

A statement by the governing body explained:

Designed to help clubs through the period of uncertainty created by the Coronavirus outbreak, the CHF would release funds to support identified financial issues caused by a lack of fixtures or pressures on other revenue streams.

With a lack of fixtures and reduction on public gatherings clubs may struggle for cash-flow and Scottish Rugby wishes to help and support them.

In addition to the £500K Club Hardship Fund, Scottish Rugby is also accelerating its collective club support payments by a month, to April from May, which will in itself exceed £500,000 in funding to ease the financial burden.

Scottish Rugby Chief Executive Mark Dodson explained that the fund was set up in response to Friday’s decision to suspend all games and training in Scotland from 6pm tonight [Sunday] until after the 29th March.

“These are unprecedented times and we are acutely aware of the significant day to day financial challenges our member clubs will face in the coming weeks if fixtures cannot be resumed in the mid to long term and other planned fund-raising initiatives are curtailed,” he said.

“We are creating the £500K Club Hardship Fund to provide clubs with the reassurance there is financial assistance available to the dedicated volunteers and staff who deliver our game in their local communities.

“It is important we act now and provide tangible, practical support during these unsettling times.

“I also want to offer, on behalf of everyone at Scottish Rugby, our very best wishes to everyone across the country at this extremely difficult time.”

Clubs will be invited to apply to the CHF by completing and returning a CHF claim application, which will be posted on the Sottish Rugby website later this week and contain details of the necessary criteria. Scottish Rugby will look to release funds in a timely manner as appropriate.

The full criteria for CHF applications will be shared with all rugby clubs in Scotland through Scottish Rugby’s own club communication channels in the coming week.

The statement also explained that work will also go into helping clubs apply for wider business support after Scottish Government announced a £320m fund for businesses affected.


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David Barnes
About David Barnes 1775 Articles
David has worked as a freelance rugby journalist since 2004 covering every level of the game in Scotland for publications including The Sunday Times, The Telegraph, The Scotsman/Scotland on Sunday/Evening News, The Herald/Sunday Herald, The Daily Mail/Mail on Sunday and The Sun.

11 Comments

  1. Well done for acting so quickly, let’s hope the application is straightforward and the club’s can tap into the money now.

  2. The amount of bad press the SRU has had Recently regarding Dodson & Co ‘s excessive wages .
    its the least it could do .

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  3. Would this not be a perfect time for Mr Dodson to announce that he will forgo a chunk of his disgustingly large salary package.

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  4. Dodson is using the Coranova virus to his advantage to try and get the vast majority of club members back on his good books. Will it work? Naw!

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