Since 2020, Entain's Pitching In initiative has sponsored the Trident Leagues, covering league costs and funding the Trident Community Fund. As well as supporting the league's running costs, Entain funds the Trident Community Fund, helping to connect clubs with their communities and operates the Pitching In Trident Leagues Volunteer Hub, providing a one-stop-shop for volunteers.

Powered by Entain, the Volunteer Hub was created for all 248 clubs that make up the Trident Leagues and is an online portal that connects the football clubs with potential volunteers. Prospective volunteers can proactively offer their services to clubs and register their skills – from arranging matchday activities, through to pitch maintenance, ground upkeep or providing administrative and professional support.

For the first time, Entain crowned three lucky volunteers ‘Volunteer of the Season’ from each of the Trident Leagues, and invited the winners to experience a once-in-a-lifetime football opportunity; a spot on the pitch at this year's bwin Fans Final and a seat at the UEFA Europe League Final.

And, we followed the volunteers every step of the way.

Here are their stories.

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Meet Mark.

Mark, a full-time carer, has volunteered at Ilkeston Town for over a decade. His work transformed the junior section and helped the first team financially.

Mark Frost, a full-time carer for his son Matthew, who has a lower leg amputation and other medical issues, has been a transformative volunteer at Ilkeston Town for over a decade.

Initially involved with the juniors, Mark elevated ITFC juniors to one of the Midlands' top grassroots clubs, boasting over 400 children. In 2018, he began assisting the first team at the request of the former owner, bringing his chartered accountant expertise to the table. When new owners acquired the club in 2019, Mark pledged his full support, playing a crucial role in the club's survival and recovery.

His dedication to the club and community is unwavering, and he has never sought remuneration for his efforts. Recognized by the Derbyshire FA for his volunteer work, Mark remains integral to the club's operations, assisting other clubs and contributing to the new FA code of conduct. He is a critical friend to the local FA and a role model within the community.

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Meet Josh.

Josh, 22, joined Malvern Town's committee last summer. His financial expertise helped secure travel sponsorship, track finances, and increase pitch hire income.

Josh Moorhouse, a 22-year-old University of York graduate, returned to his hometown of Malvern and joined Malvern Town's committee last summer due to his passion for football, financial expertise, and dynamic energy. Utilizing his Economics degree, Josh created a detailed financial model to track the club's P&L, risks, and opportunities, which had a huge impact on Malvern Town's operations.

His dedication extended beyond financial matters, as he worked behind the bar on match days to save the club expenses on additional staff. Josh also revamped the usage of the club's 3G facility, developing a pitch hire system that generated substantial income through both one-off and block bookings.

His commitment involved personally welcoming hirers, cleaning changing rooms, and managing logistics. Now training to be a chartered accountant, Josh's broad contributions have significantly impacted the club.

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Meet Howard.

Howard, a volunteer since 2010, led Cheshunt FC's mental health initiative, partnered with the NHS, and fulfilled many roles, from communications to matchday logistics.

Howard Bailey has been a key volunteer at Cheshunt Football Club since joining the committee in 2010.

This season, he spearheaded the Club's Mental Health & Wellbeing initiative, partnering with the NHS, Herts MIND, and Herts Samaritans. These collaborations have educated players and their families about mental health, with presentations and social prescribing leading to local surgeries referring individuals to the club for positive experiences through watching or playing football.

Beyond this initiative, Howard fulfills multiple roles: Communications Officer, managing the club's website and social media, and providing media work experience for UCFB students. Howard also manages the club's Video Enhanced Observation (VEO) for both home and away games and steps in as Club Secretary when needed. His responsibilities extend to matchday logistics, such as producing team sheets, transporting club kits, assisting with ground maintenance, and welcoming visitors. Howard's relentless dedication and multifaceted contributions make him an exemplary volunteer, deserving recognition for his unwavering commitment to Cheshunt Football Club.

The bwin Fans Final is a dream come true for football enthusiasts and seeing it open up to all the volunteers and the Pitching In Volunteer Hub is a fantastic development. It’s an opportunity to give back to local volunteers who are the lifeblood of grassroots football and do so much for their clubs and communities.

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Stuart Pearce

Pitching In ambassador

If you'd like to find out more about Pitching In and the Volunteer Hub, please visit