A story of inspiration
7 year old Leeds United fan and season ticket holder, Jack Johnson, recently reignited the ‘boot-room’ philosophy by agreeing to carry out household chores and odd jobs, every week for the next year!
The Doncaster-based pupil attended Leeds United Holiday Course at Queen Elizabeth Grammar School in the summer receiving an award for ‘Best Attitude’ and was so touched by his award that he decided to personally sponsor a player from the Leeds United Girls Regional Talent Club (RTC). To pay for his sponsorship, Jack agreed with parents Gareth and Vicki to earn the £2 a week by cleaning his boots, washing up and washing his own kit!
Gareth Johnson explained:
“I know all parents say it of their children but, Jack is a really grounded 7 year old. He was so touched by his award for Best Attitude that, firstly, he wanted to donate his two LUFC prize tickets to St George’s Crypt and then asked if he could sponsor one of the Girls from the Leeds United Foundation RTC because in his words, ‘he wanted to help them be really, really good.’ When we said he could but he would have to earn it, he genuinely didn’t hesitate and has committed to seeing through earning his £2 every week.”
Jack will donate £100 as part of the RTC ‘Player Partner Programme’ to 16 year old Lucy Preston who was visibly shocked at the generous offer when they met on a tour of Elland Road last week.
“It’s pretty inspiring when someone as young as Jack commits to household chores for a year. He makes me feel a bit guilty and my Mum has told me I have to do more washing up myself. In all seriousness, Jack is a really really lovely lad and I’m honoured that he has chosen me as the RTC player he is sponsoring. I can’t thank him and his family enough.”
Such has been the impact the youngster has had on Foundation staff, that his photo has been placed on the new Soccer Schools courses for the season.
Leeds United Foundation RTC Manager, Gary Waddington, said:
“This has been a really fascinating journey to watch from somebody initially coming on a holiday course to now sponsoring an RTC player. You couldn’t really have scripted it any better but the reality is, Jack has done this all himself and that’s the real sign of a quality young man. It’s easy to forget the basics of life sometimes but Jack has grounded us all a little bit with his humility at such a young age. Good on him.
And in the final words of 7 year old Jack:
“I just want to help someone get better at football.”