Striker recognised for his outstanding community work throughout the season by Alfie Mallalieu from St Andrew's Primary School.
- Year 5 pupil presented forward with his PFA award.
- Will took part in a Healthy Hearts session at the school in March.
- He has also played an active role with The Brick homeless charity.
Tuesday 6th March 2018, a day St Andrew’s Primary School pupil Alfie Mallalieu will never forget…
“When the players walked through the door I was just shocked. I started shaking and was speechless, it was the best thing ever and I still can’t believe it happened.”
Alfie’s words after his hero Will Grigg visited his school earlier this season with Michael Jacobs for a Healthy Hearts session with children in Year 5.
The Northern Ireland international, Latics’ top scorer this season with 25 goals in all competitions, was presented with the PFA Community Champion award by Alfie at the Wigan Athletic training centre earlier today.
The reactions of pupils at St Andrew’s to that visit, in particular Alfie’s, captured the imagination of the club's fan base and demonstrated the powerful impact of a player visit.
Eight of the school’s pupils enjoyed a tour of the Euxton facility and met manager Paul Cook and the first team squad, with Will giving Latics mad Alfie a pair of signed boots.
He said: “It was great to see Alfie again and his enthusiasm for the club along with the other pupils was as big as ever. The visit to St Andrew’s will live long in the memory for me because the reactions from the kids were priceless and they were just so happy.
“Working with Wigan Athletic Community Trust and The Brick this season has been fantastic and winning this award really is an honour so I’d like to thank everyone involved.”
Over 25 pupils took part in life saving activities with Will and Michael back in March, which included how to recognise a heart attack and a cardiac arrest and learning how to perform CPR.
Tom Flower, Head of Community at Wigan Athletic Community Trust, said: “All of the players have been great ambassadors for the club this season when they have supported our community activities so picking one individual out was always going to be difficult.
“Once we saw the reaction of Alfie and the other pupils at St Andrew’s though it reminded us all of the impact a visit from a first team player can have so felt it was right to name Will as our Community Champion for this season.”
Other events for Will to be involved with during the season included visiting The Brick’s foodbank in the town centre with Dan Burn, Michael Jacobs, Samy Morsy and Reece James to help pack food parcels for people facing homelessness, poverty or debt crisis in Wigan.
John Hudson, Director of Corporate Social Responsibility for the PFA, added: “We believe players who make that extra effort and contribution during the season should be recognised for their support and involvement in the local community.
“This award will hopefully raise awareness of the importance that many of our members attach to their roles off the pitch and the great contribution they make.
“We would like to offer our congratulations to Will as this season’s recipient of the Community Champion Award.”
Please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01942 318090 for more information about Wigan Athletic Community Trust.