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As a long-standing sponsor of the GAA All Ireland Football Championships, SuperValu is getting #BehindTheBall this summer and is set to reinforce its unwavering support and commitment to local communities across Ireland by introducing a new campaign that will help inspire the future stars of the GAA and encourage more people to volunteer for their local GAA club.

Kicking off in all SuperValu stores nationwide on Thursday 22nd June, SuperValu will commence a nine-week programme which will see individual retailers donate 55,000 GAA ‘First Touch’ footballs to clubs across the country, an ambitious initiative designed to get children as young as six playing football and exercising more regularly. Through the initiative, SuperValu customers will receive ‘#BehindTheBall’ tokens, which they can then use to allocate to a local GAA club of their choice at the in-store collection points.

Furthermore, SuperValu will also deliver a number of GAA volunteer events throughout the summer designed to encourage parents to volunteer at their local club and give them the skills to teach and develop the kids across all aspects of the game. Families will be urged to get #BehindTheBall and play an active role in their clubs with the intention of strengthening clubs volunteer pools and getting inactive families more active in their community. These events will be supported by SuperValu’s line-up of exciting GAA ambassadors, including Dublin GAA’s Bernard Brogan, Kerry GAA’s Donnchadh Walsh, Mayo GAA’s Lee Keegan and Monaghan GAA’s Conor McManus.

As a winner of four All Ireland medals, Bernard Brogan realises just how important it is to get children playing sport from an early an age as possible. Playing with St Oliver Plunkett’s for over two decades, Brogan knows that a plentiful supply of footballs is vital to club members and to the club’s development. Bernard is urging shoppers to support their local GAA club by getting behind SuperValu’s new initiative.

Commenting at the launch, Brogan said, “It’s a privilege to support SuperValu’s exciting ‘Behind The Ball’ campaign. I can still remember the first time I got to train and play with St Oliver Plunkett’s. It’s a very special memory that turned out to be the start of an amazing journey, which has seen me play at every level for club and county not to mention the fact that I made friends for life along the way. So make sure you visit your local SuperValu store and support your local GAA club. Whether you’re a member of a GAA club or not this is a really positive way to give back to children in your local community.”

Now in its eighth season as an official partner of the All Ireland Football Championship, SuperValu’s network of retailers continue to show a remarkable commitment to the sport, not just at national but also regional level and typify how SuperValu can have a direct benefit to the local communities in which they are embedded. Whether it’s facilitating in-store fund-raisers, sponsoring jerseys or coaching the kids in the local communities, it is estimated that the retailers donate circa over €1,000,000 per annum collectively to local clubs throughout the country.

Commenting at the launch, Des O’Mahony, Interim SuperValu Marketing Director, said, “Over the course of our long-standing partnership with the GAA, we have worked tirelessly to ensure that our sponsorship activities have had a direct impact on our local communities, enabling us to become a genuine force for building better communities in Ireland. This year, we aim to inspire more children and their families to get involved in the wonderful world of the GAA as we encourage the nation to get active and get behind the ball.”

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