Broughty Athletic boss Jamie McCunnie has followed Manchester United star Marcus Rashford’s lead in providing food for the most vulnerable in society over lockdown.
Between managing The Fed and working for football-based employability charity Street League, the 37-year-old is a busy man. Usually, that is.
When the world was turned upside down with the emergence of the coronavirus in March, McCunnie had time on his hands.
With the country effectively shut down amid the pandemic, McCunnie was placed on furlough while sport was brought to a halt, too.
That had his attention turning to how he could help and, witnessing the ongoing crisis around him, teamed up with FareShare to deliver food parcels across the region.
After a chance encounter via his work at Abertay University, the former Dundee United midfielder teamed up with the Tayside and Fife centre of the charity, to assist those in the local community struggling to put food on the table.
It’s a cause the former Scotland U/21 international was all too happy to aid.
“I used to work at Abertay University in the student’s association and also took the football team for a season,” McCunnie explained.
“When we went into lockdown, I set up a food project for people at the uni who were struggling a wee bit.
“We’d offer them free meals once a week and I got really friendly with the guys who run the FareShare project in Dundee.
“They take all the surplus food from supermarkets and things like that and distribute it to local charities and food hubs.
“I said to them: ‘I’ve got a lot of time on my hands at the minute because I’m working from home’.
“They asked if I could come in and help them so I was in volunteering in the warehouse, out and about in the community delivering stuff across Dundee, Fife and Perth.”
FareShare, a charity championed by Man U striker and food poverty campaigner Rashford, redistribute surplus food across the region.
McCunnie was quick to praise those involved with the charity locally, insisting he was just a small part of their operation.
He continued: “It was brilliant – these guys do an absolutely amazing job.
“I’m fortunate I had a job, a lot of people had lost theirs and were relying on local foodbanks.
“It’s been a very busy time for them recently. It’s probably been the hardest year they’ve had since it was established.
“The amount of food they churn out every week is unbelievable.
“I was in the Monday to Friday, nine to five, some days even later, picking up food parcels. It was dead rewarding.”
Now back out on the training pitch with his Broughty side and with the new junior season under way, McCunnie admits it feels good to have a sense of normality back amid the pandemic.
“Football’s been good because it’s a release with all the other stuff going on in the world at the minute,” he added.
“It’s something all the boys are enjoying, getting out in training and playing, because it’s the longest they’ve gone without kicking a ball.”