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Lowey returns home for 'Next 20'

10 February 2015

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Rovers star Jason Lowe took a trip down memory lane when he visited his old school.

The 23-year-old surprised excited youngsters when he turned up at St Thomas' Primary School in Leigh as part of his role as a Kick It Out ambassador.

Jason was joined at the school by Paul Mortimer, Kick It Out's Professional Players Engagement Manager, who delivered an anti-discrimination workshop to the students, to help them understand the importance of equality and inclusion within football and society in general.

Jason was then quizzed by the kids about the topics discussed, as well as his school life and footballing career, before posing for photos and signing autographs.

"I jumped at the opportunity to come back to my old school," admitted Jason.

"Being here brings back some good memories. I have a couple of cousins here, so it was nice to see them too.

"It was here at this school in Year 6 when I first signed for Rovers, but I had been kicking a ball around since I was about five years old."

Jason agreed to become one of Kick It Out's 'Next 20' ambassadors after experiencing racism at close quarters whilst on international duty with England's Under-21s.

"The Serbia match was a big turning point for me," said Rovers' right-back. "It was a real eye-opener.

"I've never seen anything like it before, so I was very eager to get involved after witnessing it first-hand.

"It's great to be able to educate the kids from a young age and send them home thinking about it. Hopefully it has had a positive impact.

"As a footballer, I feel like I have a responsibility, especially to the younger kids, in terms of being a role model."

Paul Mortimer added: "I think footballers get a lot of bad press, but Jason has been fantastic.

"He understands the subject and really cares about it. He wanted to get on board after experiencing discrimination whist playing for England.

"Jason is everything we want as an ambassador and he's a credit to Blackburn Rovers and to himself. He can inspire the young kids, so we can't ask for more than that and they really enjoyed the day."

The special visit was Jason's second event as a 'Next 20' ambassador after he visited Sacred Heart Primary School in Blackburn last March.

The 'Next 20', which was launched in October 2013 to commemorate the organisation's 20-year anniversary, aims to champion 20 young footballers across the Premier League, Football League and Women's Super League (WSL).

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