08 Mar 2019 by John Edwards

Jordan Tyms scoops league's monthly award for volunteers

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Jordan Tyms' role in spearheading Altrincham's hugely-successful rainbow shirt initiative in support of football's fight against homophobia has been officially recognised after he was named the Vanarama National League North's volunteer of the month for February.

Alty's Inclusion and Diversity Officer was nominated for the award by director Bill Waterson and is pictured, above, with his trophy.

Alty's history-making decision to wear a strip based on the LGBT + Pride Flag against Bradford (Park Avenue), as a mark of solidarity with Football v Homophobia's month of action, captured the imagination of the sporting world, with media outlets across the globe publicising it.

Acknowledging Jordan's part in putting a bold, innovative idea into practice, Bill said: 'As stated in our initial press release, we became the first football team anywhere in the world to wear a kit like this for a competitive game.

'The response was outstanding, absolutely phenomenal, with messages of support from around the world and media coverage rare - probably unprecedented, in fact - for a Vanarama National League club.

'On the day of the game alone, at The J.Davidson Stadium, we were on BBC Breakfast Time, Football Focus and the main BBC news, with additional coverage on BT Sport, ITV and Sky Sports. There was extensive national press and radio coverage, as well as exposure on an international scale.

'We appeared on websites in Brazil and the United States, while in Germany, there were Altrincham FC photos on the Berlin Underground! The cause we were supporting became a talking point across the globe, which was so rewarding for all involved. And by auctioning the match day kits, we raised a substantial four-figure sum (still being finalized) for a Manchester LGBT youth charity.

'Dignitaries at the game included the Minister for Equalities, Baroness Williams, the Mayor of Trafford and the Chief Constable of Greater Manchester Police.

'This event was Jordan’s idea – and the execution of the day itself was driven by him. He devoted dozens of hours per week to make this event the enormous success it became, and he galvanised other volunteers and (even!) directors into delivering on their obligations.

'The day was a massive positive boost for Altrincham FC, for non-League football in general and for Vanarama, who were massively supportive of the occasion. Given the magnitude of the event, the brilliance of the initial idea and the selfless hard work to deliver an amazing experience on the day, I feel Jordan is a worthy winner of this award.'

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