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LIVERPOOL’s new Lord Mayor has given his full seal of approval to the FREE charity newspaper, All Together NOW!

Speaking after being installed Lord Mayor of Liverpool, Councillor Malcolm Kennedy said: “All Together NOW! is doing a fantastic job a across the region.

“It is the only paper of its kind in the UK, and is produced here in Liverpool by a charity – another terrific example of how we are leading the way.

“That’s why I am so proud and delighted to be able to support All Together NOW!”

The newspaper is one of four charities that he has personally chosen to support during his year of office.

The Lord Mayor continued: “For 12 years this free paper has been reaching – and helping – huge numbers of people who are affected by disability and long-term health conditions.

“It’s packed is with good, reliable information about health, education, employment and leisure – a vital lifeline for those people faced with disability, and especially important for all those who are not connected to the internet.”

All Together NOW! editor Tom Dowling said: “To receive this prestigious honour is a fantastic boost to everyone connected with the paper.

“Contrary to the general decline in popularity of newspapers across the UK, demand for All Together NOW! continues to grow.

“But like so many other small charities, finding the funding to balance the books and meet ever-increasing overheads is a constant worry.

“That’s why being chosen as one of the Lord Mayor’s supported charities means so much to us.

“To have our work recognised in this way by the First Citizen of Liverpool is a tremendous tribute to everyone who has helped us get this far.”

“We are now looking forward to working with the Lord Mayor, his charity committee and the Town Hall to make the year of fundraising the most successful ever.”

The paper’s supporters include The Morgan Foundation, United Utilities, Park Group, Merseyside Fire & Rescue Service, Greater Manchester Fire & Rescue Service, Allied Vehicle, Da Vinci Mobility and Cyclone.

More than 100,000 copies of the bi-monthly newspaper are distributed to supermarkets, hospitals and other venues across the North West – with about 90,000 copies circulating across both Merseyside and Greater Manchester

A short online film, made by Liverpool-based Zut Media that tells the remarkable story behind the paper is also helping the charity’s fundraising.

View the film at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RXuEcbM3zNU

THE other charities the Lord Mayor will be supporting are:

The Owen McVeigh Foundation, which supports families affected by leukemia.

The foundation was set up by Mark and Jo McVeigh in memory of their son who passed away due to the condition.

It provides children and their families with amazing occasions to look forward to such as VIP concert experiences, celebrity meet and greets and family holidays.

The ADHD Foundation, which was created by the council and became a charity 10 years ago.

It supports over 2,000 families a year and delivers training to teachers, nurses, doctors and social care professionals.

The Choir With No Name, which runs choirs for people who have experienced homelessness.

Based at the Bluecoat, it provides the support needed by members.

Readers can donate to the Lord Mayor’s Charity by texting LMAY17 £1, LMAY17 £5 or LMAY17 £10 depending on the amount they want to give.

COUNCILLOR Malcolm Kennedy was elected to Liverpool city council in 1998 and is stepping down as Cabinet Member for Regeneration after seven years.

As the First Citizen of Liverpool he will act as a focal point for the community, promoting the city and forging national and international links.

A former teacher, financial advisor and regeneration officer, Cllr Kennedy was born in Gateshead and moved to Liverpool in 1974.

His two sons, Robert and Alan, were born at Mill Road maternity hospital and live in the city.

His wife, Liliana, a Spanish citizen who speaks fluent English, Spanish and Romanian, will be the Lady Mayoress during his year in office. Assisting them will be Victor, Liliana’s son, who has a Master’s Degree in International Relations.

The Lord Mayor said: “It was my passion for The Beatles that brought me to Liverpool in the first place, but thanks to my wife I now know a lot more about Spanish and Romanian music than I ever thought possible!

“I am so glad I came to Liverpool as a young student and even more glad that I stayed. I am as proud as any Liverpudlian to say I come from Liverpool.

“However, I have to be honest and admit that when it comes to football I am neither red nor blue but remain committed to the black and white stripes of Newcastle United!”