MARCUS RASHFORD has been awarded the PFA Merit Award in recognition for his work tackling child poverty in the UK.
The award is presented to an individual who has given great service to football over a long period of time and Rashford’s charitable contributions have been acknowledged.
The Manchester United star successfully campaigned for the government’s free school meals programme to be extended into the summer holidays.
Rashford teamed up with poverty and food waste charity FareShare and garnered plenty of support amid the coronavirus pandemic, with children unable to collect free meals while schools remained closed.
His efforts ultimately resulted in the government providing children with a six-week meal voucher.
The 22-year-old continues to battle leading MPs on the issue, having successfully reversed the Department for Education’s original stance on the subject.
After receiving the award, Rashford said: “It’s a huge honour and I hope it encourages and promotes other players to do things to help.
“It’s been a long journey but I think the first phase was probably the hardest part, which was learning and self-teaching, who were the right people to get in contact with to help these children,
“We had the idea but we didn’t know how to pitch them or who to pitch them to. That was probably the most difficult phase.
“What we’ve done so far is only the short term, me and my team are trying to find plans on how we can help these children for the rest of their childhood.
“Long-term, we want to find answers to the problem. At the moment, we don’t have those answers but we will do our best to try and find them.”