Through its 72 community charities, The Football League Trust has collectively pioneered the delivery programmes designed to support some of the least well off, or socially marginalized sections of their communities.

The Football League Trust has approached the issue of INCLUSION by focusing programmes and funding on a range of specific groups including people from minority religions, disabilities, young people classified as NEET (not in education, employmnent or training) and others living in areas of high deprivation, the unemployed and homeless and people in, or at risk of entering the criminal justice system.

These programmes have emerged from recognitions of the contributions that football can make through such work, and crucially that football can offer something beyond the reach of more traditional providers in society.

The delivery of programmes designed to overcome some of the most pressing social issues of the day demand that trusts have specific skills, motivations and visions and has inspired its members to realise the difference they can make in various communities.

The Football League's 72 charities now annually engage over 120,000 participants in social inclusion projects, including The National Citizen Service project, Kickz and On Target, and deliver over 700 schemes locally.

The Street Violence Ruins Lives campaign, run by The Charlton Athletic Community Trust, has earned national recognition, using the vehicle of Football In The Community to tackle escalating knife crime and street violence.

The programme was developed in 2008 following the death of teenage Addicks supporter Rob Knox, who was stabbed in Sidcup, and aims to raise awareness of the serious issue of weapons related violence among young people.

The scheme works within schools and on estates, identifying young people who are involved or at risk of becoming involved in crime or violence, and doing specialist work with repeat offenders.

Chief Executive of the Charlton Community Trust Jason Morgan insists that the club have a duty to use their status in the community to make a statement.

He said: "I don't think there is anyone who doesn't believe that something needs to be done to highlight the dangers posed by street weapons - and at Charlton we are in a position to do something about it.

"We go into schools and deliver programmes on 80 estates per week where we can reach the most at risk and vulnerable young people.

"The power of football is extraordinary. Youngsters respond far more to someone in a tracksuit than traditional approaches."

When London rivals Charlton played Leyton Orient at The Valley, the two teams wore special kits with their sponsors' logo replaced by the slogan 'Street Violence Ruins Lives.'

Nick Darvill, who was appointed as Charlton's Community Trust Crime Reduction Manager in 2010, said the scheme has helped educate children about the dangers of the growing knife culture.

"Sally Knox, Rob's mum, is now a life coach at Charlton, working in the schools and that's remarkable, said Nick.

'When Sally tells her story about the tragic loss of a young son, I've seen kids stopped in their tracks because she has such a powerful message to convey.

"If you can get young people to listen, and make the right decisions early enough, it can save a lot of heartbreak, because the consequences of knife crime can create misery for a lifetime.

"The Street Crime Ruins Lives Campaign has proved a catalyst, and Football in the Community has the ability to amplify that message."

Nick added: "It is only a tiny minority in society responsible for knife crime, but through the scheme we are making young adults continually aware of the consequences of street crime and how it can have such a terrible effect on people."

Street Crime Ruins Lives has also received support from the Metropolitan Police Service, who praised Charlton's street crime initiative.

"Tackling knife crime requires each and every one of us to ask what we can do to help - that means parents, neighbours, agencies, business and the media

"And that is why the work that Charlton Athletic's Trust is doing within the community is to be highly commended."

'Inclusion' is one of four key themes promoted by The Football League Trust, alongside 'Sport', 'Education' and 'Health'.