Foundation of Light and the Premier League recently teamed up to tell Ministers and MPs about their pioneering work in the region.
Baroness Jay of Paddington who sponsored the event in the House of Lords with Sunderland MP Julie Elliot, outlined some of the ground-breaking work being undertaken in the north east by the Foundation of Light, the charity arm of Sunderland AFC.
The Baroness also revealed that the Beacon of Light has the potential to generate an estimated social return on investment of more than £73 million within the next 20 years.
The Beacon of Light will be an inspirational, multi-functional Centre of Opportunity – bringing people, communities and agencies together to make an outstanding and long lasting difference to people’s lives.
The £15m development, which will be operated by the Foundation of Light, will expand the award-winning work of the charity using the power of football and sport to engage people in activities designed to improve their lives, and the lives of those around them.
Julie Elliot MP added: “Despite the ground-breaking efforts of the Foundation of Light and various local agencies, Sunderland is still an area with its challenges. The Beacon of Light will empower people to take responsibility for their own choices and actions and encourage people to learn more, do more and be more.
“It will allow them to change their world and that of their families and neighbours – a succession of steady and gradual changes that will echo the story of social and economic regeneration in the North East.”