Northern Ireland fans to help disabled children in Azerbaijan
A delegation from the Amalgamation of Official Northern Ireland Supporters' Clubs (AONISC) will make a goodwill visit to a centre for disabled children during their time in Azerbaijan for the World Cup qualifier next month.
The visit – organised in conjunction with the British Embassy in Baku – builds on charitable work carried out by fans on previous away trips.
Gary McAllister, AONISC chairman, said: “Northern Ireland fans have a well-deserved reputation for their very generous charitable giving.
“In the past, fans have undertaken visits to orphanages in both Armenia and Azerbaijan and this is something that we wanted to do during our visit to Baku.
“The AONISC will cover any costs for transporting the gifts for the children, so every penny donated will directly benefit the children at the centre.”
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Fans have already exceeded the fundraising target for cash to buy toys for the children, and Mr McAllister said extra funds would also be spent on the project.
Following Euro 2016 Mr McAllister had the honour of collecting the Grand Vermeil from the mayor of Paris in recognition of Northern Ireland fans for their sportsmanlike behaviour at the tournament.
Northern Ireland play Azerbaijan on June 10 at Tofiq Bakhramov Stadium in Baku.