In the summer of 2016, Glasgow played host to the Homeless World Cup. As Crerar Hotels very own GoGlasgow Urban Hotel is lcoated in Paisley Road West, the hotel group was delighted to announce a £15,000 sponsorship referee package for the tournament which kicked off on July 10. The generous donation allowed a team of referees from all over the world – many with an experience of homelessness – to be involved in the tournament.

Crerar Trust is a charitable trust funded by the Crerar Hotel Group. Giving back to local communities to improve the quality of everyday lives is at the heart of Crerar Hotels – with a motto of “Hotels with Heart and Soul.” Each year over half of the hotel distributable profits are entrusted to the Crerar Trust for gifting to charities and community projects local to Crerar Hotels throughout Scotland and Yorkshire.

How did it work?

A group of 27 referees officialed in the four-a-side games – of which 416 in totalwere played – ensuring fair play, which is a central pillar of the Homeless World Cup.

Many came from all over the world, often with direct experience of homelessness and social injustice. The generous funding from Crerar Trust allowed them to come to Scotland and be a part of what organisers have promised will be, “the most inspiring tournament on the planet,”.

Why is this important?

The Homeless World Cup is a unique, pioneering social movement which uses football to inspire homeless people to change their own lives.

Homeless World Cup founder and president Mel Young comments:

“We’re extremely grateful for the significant support that the Crerar Hotel Group and its charitable trust have agreed to provide the Homeless World Cup. Our referees are a vital component of the tournament, setting the tone for fair play. This is an area we required key financial support to ensure the widest selection of referees, many involved in life changing work within their own country, could be with us. Crerar Hotel Group’s approach in which they gift half of the company’s distributable profits to charity is remarkable and reflects exactly the values and ethos which define the Homeless World Cup.”

Paddy Crerar, chief executive at Crerar Hotel Group adds:

Supporting the growth and development of people in different communities is a key priority for the trust. To encourage talent, to see the disadvantaged acquire new skills, confidence and interest in team effort is of great importance to us” Paddy said. Supporting the Homeless World Cup was a “no brainer” Paddy adds, ‘the evident passion and commitment shown in previous tournaments was infectious. It’s great to welcome the Homeless World Cup to Glasgow and is a fantastic chance for people in the local community and further afield to come together, and offer encouragement to homeless and socially disadvantaged people all over the world, we are proud to offer our support to further this incredible tournament.”

Scottish FA referee Bobby Madden comments:

“It was terrific to meet some of the referees today. They’ve got an intense programme of games and are managing games with players from a range of different backgrounds, so there are many challenges – some of which are very different to those I face each week. I wish the referees every success for the Homeless World Cup, and that, as is always the best way, nobody notices them!”

This year’s referees (subject to change) come from Scotland, Australia, Italy, the Netherlands, Denmark, Chile, Mexico, Lithuania, South Africa, Portugal, Indonesia & Norway.