Andy Robertson has been embraced for an “extremely generous” donation to a mental health charity in Scotland, with Back Onside “forever grateful” to the left-back.
Liverpool’s No. 26 has stayed in touch with his roots since rising from Queen’s Park in his hometown of Glasgow to first choice for the champions of the world.
Robertson has regularly supported food banks, urging family to make donations rather than give him presents on his birthday, and in 2018 rewarded a young Liverpool fan who showed his backing with a Roberto Firmino shirt.
In this time of uncertainty, regardless of the government’s initiatives to ensure workers do not go without pay, top-level footballers are among the most financially stable.
The effects of the coronavirus pandemic, and the self-isolation advised, stretch beyond physical health, with mental health also a key area of focus.
Back Onside are a mental health charity whose emphasis is on ‘Support Through Sport’, and in the wake of the pandemic and the suspension of sport across the UK, appealed for donations to continue their efforts.
And on Thursday evening, Back Onside revealed they had received an “extremely generous amount of money” from Robertson, contributing the majority of the £5,458 raised on their JustGiving page at time of writing.
“At the beginning of this week, Team Back Onside were in a really tough position; funds were extremely low and demand was, and still is, higher than ever,” they explained in a post on Twitter.
Some positive news tonight, with special thank you to @LFC football player & @ScotlandNT Captain @andrewrobertso5 ???? xx #BackOnside #MentalHealthMatters #supportthroughsport #SuicidePrevention pic.twitter.com/2a7uYNZE6h
— Back Onside (@BackOnside) March 19, 2020
“However, this morning we woke up to numerous donations in response to our Crisis Appeal, that we shared at the beginning of the week.
“We are incredibly lucky to be surrounded by the most amazing, selfless and kindhearted supporters.
“Each and every donation that we have received will make such a huge difference to those affected by mental health.
“From our emergency phone line to one-to-one counselling (both of which are busier than they have ever been), every single penny will be spent to ensure that those facing mental health challenges get the support they need.
“I would like to give a special mention to Liverpool football player and Scotland captain Andy Robertson, who today donated an extremely generous amount of money.
“This particular donation will allow Back Onside to continue providing lifesaving support to so many people that are desperately in need and we will honestly be forever grateful.
“Since the appearance of COVID-19, we are now dealing with more crisis situations than ever before.
“We will continue to support every person that approaches us for help, but we really, really need your continued support and donations to allow this to happen.”
Back Onside’s founder and CEO, Libby Emmerson, went on the explain that “every donation, no matter how big or small, makes a huge difference to those that are challenged by mental health.”
In an interview with the Herald, Emmerson detailed that the charity had saved four from suicide in the past week, with Back Onside an alternative to the Samaritans.
“Two were on Monday, one on Wednesday, and one on Thursday,” she said.
“I’m talking about being out on Monday morning, in the woods, looking for a footballer. Then, another sportsperson was at a train line, another was about to take an overdose.”
The charity is no doubt close to Robertson’s heart as Emmerson revealed the charity had worked with 80 SPFL players since their foundation, and the 26-year-old allowed Back Onside to publicise his donation to raise awareness.
To donate to Back Onside, visit their Just Giving page here.