Country Valley Foods has signed up to support the life-changing work of Middlesbrough Football Club’s charity arm.

The Billingham-based food service, which already acts as a supplier to the club, has joined MFC Foundation’s Friends of the Foundation scheme.

Funds generated by the scheme this year are being used to launch a programme to help children struggling in the transition from primary to secondary school, support those with mental health problems and develop projects to improve disabled provision at community venues.

The charity was set up by club chairman Steve Gibson in 1996 and has so far invested more than £25m in the Tees Valley and has worked to improve the lives of more than 500,000 people.

It uses the power of the club’s brand and popularity to engage with young people and its achievements played an important part in the club being named as EFL Checkatrade North East & Yorkshire Community Club of the Year.

James Munro, Managing Director of Country Valley Foods, said: “We are a family-run company whose roots are firmly in the community so this is an ideal way of supporting a great cause which benefits local people.

“Football is all about passion and we are passionate about supporting MFC Foundation to help it continue its fantastic work.”

Edward Munro, Managing Director of Country Valley Foods, said: “We are thrilled to become a Friend of MFC Foundation and are committed to improving the life chances of young people and adults across Teesside.”

Ann-Marie Anderson, Business Development Manager at MFC Foundation, added: “We’re delighted to welcome Country Valley Foods as a member of our Friends of the Foundation scheme.

“Its valuable support is crucial for the amazing work MFC Foundation does across Teesside, as we strive to raise aspirations, inspire hope and change the lives of hundreds of thousands of people in the region.”