Our community champions are supporting women’s and girls’ football teams across the country – helping them apply for grants from the Asda Foundation to give more young players the opportunity to enjoy football.
With the England Lionesses winning Euro 2022 and now through to the quarter-finals of the Women's World Cup, there's never been as much excitement about women's and girls' football – and our Altrincham store's community champion Catherine Massey says she's delighted to see that translate into interest at a grassroots level.
She helped Timperley Villa FC apply for a £540 grant from the Asda Foundation to pay for a series of training sessions for girls aged five to seven. It's the first time the club's been able to offer opportunities to girls that age.
Catherine said: "It's great to see these girls getting into football because women's football is really on the rise.
"The profile of the England women's team has never been higher, with matches on TV, and all the support they have. It's fabulous that they're doing so well and that so many more girls and women are playing football.
"It was really important to me to support them and show that there is encouragement for more girls to join in."
Timperley Villa already have an under 18s women's team, but secretary Andy Gorman says Catherine's support is enabling them to give opportunities to a younger age group. The club organised a series of training sessions to gauge interest before assessing whether to extend that into the new season and forming a team.
He said: "Grassroots football relies completely on volunteers, so without them, and without donations like this one from Asda, nothing would happen.
"We felt we needed to start doing something for younger ages, and when we were thinking about I met Catherine at another event and she said she might be able to help. And now a few weeks on we're up and running and we've got about 12 girls participating. The most important thing at this age is to get them playing and having fun, but with the numbers we've got I'm sure we'll carry it on into the new season."
Anyone who's interested in joining in should email Andy at email@example.com
Here are some of the other ways our stores are supporting women's and girls' football teams:
Our Great Yarmouth store invited young footballers from Great Yarmouth girls' football team for a fundraising bag pack:
Our Weston-super-Mare store helped Congresbury FC apply for a £400 grant from the Asda Foundation to buy new equipment for a newly formed women's and girls' team.
Jackie Burt, the community champion at our Cramlington store turned up with refreshments for the young players from Burradon Juniors Football Club at a particularly well training session. She's hoping to invite them in for a fundraising visit soon:
Barry Town United Women FC have been awarded a grant for £460 from the Asda Foundation with the help of Asda Barry so they can purchase kit and training equipment.
Saughall Colts Junior Football Club in Chester has been awarded a grant for £1,600 to help pay for equipment to help them meet the needs of their ever-increasing girls football section, which currently has 50 girls and three teams.
And Liam Timms, our Sheffield Drakehouse store's community champion, donated some supplies to Eckington Belles Ladies FC under 12s;