Livingston FC unveil shirts in honour of Jak Trueman charity

Jak's mum Alison with the new Livingston shirt. Picture Ian Georgeson
Jak's mum Alison with the new Livingston shirt. Picture Ian Georgeson
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The name of the charity set up by tragic teenager Jak Trueman will be emblazoned on team shirts worn by Lingston players next season.

The League One club has offered a sponsorship package to the Team Jak Foundation, which is worth more than £25,000 and sees the group promoted on the back of its strip.

Jak's mum Alison and Captain Sean Crighton. Picture: Ian Georgeson

Jak's mum Alison and Captain Sean Crighton. Picture: Ian Georgeson

Team Jak was founded by football-mad Jak Trueman before he passed away last year at just 15 after a battle with a rare and aggressive form of cancer, Gamma Delta T-Cell Lymphoma.

It is hoped the new deal will raise the profile of the charity, whose staff support children with terminal illnesses and their families at Jak’s Den in Livingston Village.

As well as a respite centre, the facility has an under-fives “kidzone”, a games area and a counselling room.

Livingston FC bosses said the “in-kind” sponsorship deal would include a “celebrity” match following the success of the first two over the last year.

Also among planned benefits are VIP tickets, access to the stadium for fundraising events, banners and inclusion in all marketing material.

Senior figures at the football club, who will unveil their new season strip tomorrow, said offering support to Team Jak would be a key priority.

Shareholder Gordon Ford said: “Team Jak is a local charity which is very close to our hearts.

“Although we’ve supported them in a variety of ways since Jak’s passing it made perfect sense to take it to the next level and offer them the chance to have their name on the back of the shirts as part of an in-kind donation.”

He added: “I’m confident this and the other opportunities agreed as part of the package over the course of the next 12 months, including another charity match, will help raise both their profile and much-needed funds for the charity.”

News of the sponsorship deal has been hailed by leaders at Team Jak.

Jak’s mum Allison Barr, the charity’s director of operations, said: “We are hugely grateful to Livingston Football Club for this incredibly generous donation of in-kind sponsorship. This will help us to spread the word about Jak’s Den, help even more families who are in the same position we found ourselves in and help us raise funds to create a custom-built Jak’s Den in Livingston in 2018.”

Founded in 1943 as Ferranti Thistle, Livingston will this season play in the Scottish League One.

The club was admitted to the Scottish Football League and renamed Meadowbank Thistle in 1974.

In 1995, the club was relocated to Livingston and renamed after the town.

Since then, Livingston have played their home games at a stadium now known as the Tony Macaroni Arena, after the restaurant chain.