Screenshot 2023-09-04 at 14.53.21

A Momentous Milestone: 15,000 Kano Kids

Back in the 2010/2011 season when The Kano Foundation was first formed, the idea of taking even 1000 Kano Kids to Celtic Park seemed huge. 
But on the 26th August, we celebrated 15,000 Kano Kids being “lifted over the turnstiles” at Paradise. 
Attending a football match can have a huge positive impact on the lives of children. However, with the cost of living increasing every month, that experience is out of reach for many. 
Since that 2010/11 season, The Kano Foundation have been working to ensure it’s something that as many kids as possible get to experience. 
The lucky 15,000th Kano Kid, Max Freeman, attended the Celtic V St Johnstone game and had the opportunity to meet some of the Celtic players (including Captain Callum McGregor and Greg Taylor), step onto the famed Celtic turf, and chat to Celtic TV. 
WhatsApp Image 2023-08-26 at 14.49.23

He was joined at the game by Kano Kids from Newtown Rock Boys Club, Port Glasgow Boys Club, Rossvale Girls Under 12s, Kilsyth Athletic, Cumbernauld Colts, Carbrain United, and Burnbank Boys Club.

The Kano Foundation Chairman, Mark Kingsman, said:
“Many football fans, no matter who they support, have fantastic memories of their first ever match. Standing with their family or friends, neck hairs bristling as that first tumultuous chorus echoed round the stands.

“Picture yourself on the terraces, wearing your scarf while gleaming at your tighly-clasped programme, with the smell of pie and Bovril wafting around your nostrils.

“But now imagine you never had that chance. Out of reach as social circumstance makes it too unaffordable for you. Sadly, in these hard-pressed times, that’s the reality for many.

“At the Kano Foundation, we are changing that with the help of people who have similar memories and want to make sure others do too, either by volunteering or through donations.

“Reaching 15,000 kids is an amazing milestone and we look forward to the next 15,000. Who knows – one day a former Kano kid may even have been inspired enough that they will pull on the jersey for the Hoops. All thanks to everyone who has played a part, big or small.”

Tom Boyd, former Celt and Kano Foundation patron said:

“Being part of this work is an absolute pleasure. Knowing we have given over 15,000 young people ‘hairs on the back of the neck’ moments is astounding.

“We show football not only as a positive experience, but also a way to give encouragement and confidence to young people. It can deliver important messages about respect, health and well-being, team building, as well as social skills.”

The match day experience is led by a team of volunteers who ensure every kid who comes to a game with The Kano Foundation has the best time possible.

Volunteer Neil Murphy, says

“Most matches we kick off from about 12pm getting ready for our special guests. We gather at our base in St Michael’s Chapel Hall in Parkhead, Glasgow.

“Every child receives their own goodie bag which includes the all-important, iconic Kano Foundation green and white scarf! We provide a hot meal, and, after some health and safety tips, the real fun begins walking to the stadium en-masse.

“Our running costs are around £2000 per match and every week presents a new challenge, but it’s worth every minute to witness 150+ excitable kids in a packed football stadium. It’s just so rewarding to be part of this.”

The Kano Foundation |
Keeping Football Free for Kids | Registered Scottish Charity No. SC042477