Zach Merrett has presented a $5,000 cheque to Multiple Sclerosis, on behalf of the Essendon Football Club.
The playing group chose to allocate their AFLPA Players Care donations to MS, a disease close to Zach’s heart.
Zach’s mum Cathy was diagnosed with MS 28 years ago.
“I’m very lucky that the players felt the need to support myself, my brother and obviously my family but hopefully this money can help the MS society get some more awareness and much needed funds to try and find a cure,” Merrett said.
“Being able to donate to MS is something that is close to my heart but the credit has to go to the AFLPA and the players who give up some money and donate to worthy causes.”
MS General Manager – Strategic Marketing and Fundraising, Ben Holgate, accepted the cheque on behalf of MS, thanking the Bombers for their donation.
“It’s fantastic to get this money. Thanks to Essendon Football Club and AFLPA, but particularly thanks to Zach. He has been a fantastic supporter of MS for many years,” Holgate said.
“Thank you very much, it is really appreciated, especially by the 25,000 people living with MS living in Australia, all of whom need plenty of help and support.”
AFL Players Care is the players’ official charity initiative and was established in 2014 when the male playing group voted to increase their match fee charity contributions from $25 to $50 per player, per game.
While $25 per game per player is still donated to the AFL Players’ official charity partner, Ladder, to help tackle youth homelessness, an additional $25 per game per player is now contributed to the AFL Players Care fund.
$180,000 of this fund is then equally distributed among all 18 male AFL clubs each season giving each team the opportunity to support one or two charities of they are passionate about.