Huddersfield Town forward Danny Ward has been awarded the Professional Footballers’ Association Community Champion for his contributions to the local community during the 2022/23 season.

The PFA Community Champion Awards recognise players deeply involved in the community around them and lending a hand to their club’s charity work throughout the season.

And whilst Ward was helping the Club maintain their Sky Bet Championship status on the pitch, he was helping to inspire others off it.

In January, the 32-year-old visited Key Stage 2 students at Moldgreen Primary School and gave a motivating discussion surrounding the school’s core values of resilience, confidence, and teamwork, offering personal examples to back up his comments.

He was then more than happy to answer questions from the students to bring an exciting morning to an end.

This was made possible through our delivery of Premier League Primary Stars in Moldgreen. Premier League Primary Stars uses the power of the Huddersfield Town brand to engage pupils and teachers across all subject areas. The programme is available to Primary Schools across Kirklees, Wakefield and Calderdale, inspiring boys and girls aged five to 11 in the classroom, the playground and on the sports field to help their learning in English, Maths, PE and PSHE.

Ward was recognised for his impact on the session and was presented the award by Chief Executive Officer Siobhan Atkinson.

On receiving his award, he said: “I’m really pleased to have been put forward by the Huddersfield Town Foundation as their Community Champion, especially because I see my role as a professional footballer as one that extends away from the pitch.

“As a Yorkshire lad, I have countless ties to the local area, so to give back to our community and play an active role within it is a real honour and privilege. Not only do I live and work here, but this is also where my family is being raised and where my children are being educated – so if visiting a school means that we can impact young people’s lives positively and have them thinking about and interacting with issues such as resilience, adversity and hard work, I cannot think of a more worthwhile use of my time. It’s rewarding and worthwhile, reminding us of where we come from whilst reinforcing the opportunities and paths open to anyone willing to apply themselves.

“Taking a morning to go to an assembly as I did in Moldgreen is such a small undertaking compared to the experience of the children within that room, and while standing and speaking in front of hundreds of kids might make me more nervous than running out to play in a packed stadium, it’s never going to be something I shy away from or ignore the upside of. We were all children needing positive role models and examples at one time, and if I’m able to be that for just one young person, that completely validates the effort made.

“Having been lucky enough to play for several clubs in various areas across my career, I know how important it is to engage with the local area and community regardless of where you’re based, and the benefits of doing so enrich the lives of everyone connected to that place. This isn’t something I do for awards or recognition, but I appreciate this opportunity all the same.”

Siobhan also commented on Ward’s contribution to the Foundation, adding: “We wanted to recognise and thank Danny for his contribution and support of the work of the Huddersfield Town Foundation.

“It is fantastic to have a player of Danny’s experience and stature engaging in what we deliver. He’s such a popular player amongst the fan base, so I’m sure they will be equally as pleased as I am about his desire to give back not only to the game but to his very own community.

We look forward to Danny having the opportunity to see more of our work next season and our thanks to the PFA for the opportunity to recognise player commitment and excellence in their off-pitch work.”

Moldgreen School were absolutely delighted with the visit and mention it every time a member of HTF is back working there. Young people need role models who provide them with real life examples of resilience, persistence and confidence. Danny delivered this in such a meaningful way the young people were hanging on every word.

The Foundation would like to place on record our thanks to Danny for his work and to congratulate him on his deserving award.

If you would like to find out more information about Premier League Primary Stars, please email help@htafcfoundation.com with your enquiry.