The chair of the Algarve Spurs Supporters Crew, Stephen Hands, told The Portugal News that their chosen charity was “encouraged by Tottenham Hotspur F.C and listening to Kiss FM”, where they heard an interview with Centre Algarve. “It really struck a chord for us so that is the charity we have dedicated our fundraising to.”
Stephen told The Portugal News that The Algarve Spurs Supporters Crew’s honorary president is ex-spurs Captain, Graham Roberts, who “incredibly flew over to specially attend the charity event.”
Stephen also recalled: “I met Graham Roberts at a Spurs game before we moved to Portugal, where he told me he worked for a charity in Portugal, he never told me the name of the actual charity but it actually turned out to be Centre Algarve’s charity which at the time we didn’t know about.”
The Algarve Spurs Supporters Crew
Stephen Hands told The Portugal News that they started the supporters club in 2018, following his families official move to Portugal in 2017. “Over the years we had been coming here a lot as we bought an apartment out here in 2007 and it was actually where my wife and I had our honeymoon in 1991. If you are a football supporter you centre on a bar and make friends with fellow supporters of your club, which is why we thought we should make it official, and so we reached out to Tottenham Hotspur, who are excellent with all this and so we fulfilled the requirements which includes having 16 members (including my wife and daughter) and also being involved in some kind of charity initiative, which is what we did.”
Stephen Hands wanted to thank the community for their involvement and tremendous support and gave special mentions to the companies for their wonderful raffle prizes which included “Tottenham Hotspur sending four tickets to any home game, signed memorabilia by Andy Mahoney and Graham Roberts (shirts, photos, road signs and a Jimmy Greaves signed football shirt), an all-inclusive three-course dinner for two from Vivaldos (Cuica Restaurant), 250 euros in meals and drinks from the owners of O’Niels, New Fat Frog and Sweet Carolines in Vilamoura. As well as Breakfast meals or drinks at many bars which included The Empty Glass, Erins Ilse, Fat Cats, Ancora, The Three Harps, Coffe Zen, Bar Espelho, Devlins, Senhor Frogs, Sharkeys, BJs Canadian Bar, Charlies Bar, The Cottage, San Miguel and Solo.
As well as other items such as boat trips from 2 care of Algarve Experiences (Andrew Dickinson), to a family day at Aquashow from Portugal Rocks, Tuk Tuk ride from Tony’s Tuk Tuk, Free transfer from Funny Orange, motorcycle for the day from Retro Rent, t-shirts from Game Yarns, a fitness watch from a local donor and candles from Algarve Candle Co. There were also prizes from local people which included 6 bottles from Paul Arnott, Qi Gong training lesson from Chris Bowe, Hamper from Pauline Hands and the son of owners of The Empty Glass, Harry Brownlow, aged 7, made a drawing for auction which raised 200 euros.
Tom Willis, who runs Centre Algarve in Moncarapacho, told The Portugal News that they officially opened Centre Algarve in 2016, following living in Ayamonte where “a good friend of ours who runs a transport company in the UK, who transports disabled and special needs children to and from school. He told us that he had been speaking to parents who said they have nowhere to go on holiday so he said he would finance Centre Algarve, if we could run it. We decided we would find the property and get it running which we did, having refurbished the whole place with the help of volunteers.”
Supporting Portuguese Families
When asked about Associação Causa Vibrante, which The Algarve Spurs Supporters Crew donated to, Tom told The Portugal News that “Centre Algarve has a charity in England, which raises funds to send special needs and disabled families over to Centre Algarve but myself and my daughter thought there is no one helping the Portuguese families so we set up Associação Causa Vibrante, because we knew there were so many Portuguese families that wanted to come here on holiday but didn’t have the money. All the funds raised in Portugal, through our charity nights and The Algarve Spurs Supporters Crew funds Portuguese families with special needs and disabilities to be able to have a holiday at Centre Algarve and these are families who are on the bread line and hardly get any help in Portugal. We also support APPC in Faro and Lisbon and we support our local Caso do Povo with santa sacks at Christmas.”
Tom then shared that “We have one family that we give a holiday ever year where neither the father nor the mother can work because their child takes two people to look after because he has severe cerebral palsy and they don’t even get enough money that pay their sons medication so they have to set up one of these funds me pages to raise a bit of money just to pay his medication. We work with Timeless Moments, who give us a couple of trips a year for our severe families and this year this family got to go on a boat trip for 3 hours which is just amazing for them to get to experience that.”
When asked about his thoughts on the incredible money raised by the club, Tom told The Portugal News that “The money raised will pay for around 8 or 9 Portuguese families to come here on holiday which is fantastic.”
“This is the second time that Algarve Spurs have raised money for us, I believe it was around 2000 euros the first time and they have almost doubled it, Stephen Hands and his family and all of the guys are great and have done a hell of a lot for us and they have visited Centre Algarve and know what we do for the families. We want to keep supporting them like they support us, so we are already organising some things to come from England for them to auction.”
When speaking about the charity event, Tom revealed that “We are very fortunate that the guy who finances the place and runs the English Charity Centre Algarve is very involved with Tottenham Hotspur and so unbeknown to Algarve Spurs, the ex-captain of Graham Roberts actually works for the Centre Algarve charity in the UK, so he helps organise a lot of charity events so I actually got him to fly over for the day, which you can imagine had Algarve Spurs with their mouths open.”
For more information about The Algarve Spurs Supporters Crew visit @AlgarveSpursSupporters on Facebook or @Algarvespurs on Instagram. If you would like to donate to Centre Algarve’s charity, please contact Stephen Hands by emailing . For more information or to volunteer at Centre Algarve, please visit or search ‘Centre Algarve’ on Facebook.
Following undertaking her university degree in English with American Literature in the UK, Cristina da Costa Brookes moved back to Portugal to pursue a career in Journalism, where she has worked at The Portugal News for 3 years. Cristina’s passion lies with Arts & Culture as well as sharing all important community-related news.