Players in Henfield Football Club’s U8s team - many of whom are Albion fans including two boys who have been mascots at the Amex this season – have raised £2,320 for key workers in the village as well as two Sussex hospices with their goalscoring challenge.
The squad took part in a ‘100 goals in a week challenge’, which they had to complete in their gardens, to raise money for a rainbow of hand cream gifts for key workers.
Between them the players, who are aged seven and eight, scored over 2,000 during the challenge including long-range free kicks, volleys, half-volleys, bicycle kicks, headers and even some trick shots.
Their challenge was inspired by the fundraising efforts of Colonel Tom Moore, with the players completing their goals on his 100th birthday.
The team are now donating over 370 hand creams to staff at St Barnabas Hospice in Worthing and St Catherine’s Hospice in Crawley as well as to workers in Henfield care homes and shops, who have been helping support local people since lockdown.
As the team has exceeded its original fundraising goal, they are also going to provide funding for other projects in Henfield to support people who have been most impacted by Covid-19.
Team manager Tom Wilson said: “The boys are really missing their weekly training sessions and matches, so we have been setting a few challenges to help them kick their way through coronavirus and stay active. We thought it would be great if their latest challenge helped support others too.
“Many of the team are big Albion fans and were inspired by their favourite players in their goalscoring efforts. We have been overwhelmed with the support for the team’s fundraising. The boys all worked so hard on scoring some great goals and in getting sponsors to support our campaign. I am really proud of them all.”
Once each player completed their 100th goal in the challenge they were asked to share a fun goal celebration video with the team’s coaches.
Tom added: “There were some really creative celebrations including a player jumping in a paddling pool, another running from their house around a sports field and ‘Thank you NHS’ revealed on players’ chests when taking their football shirts off. Hopefully, we can put some of them to good use when we are allowed back on the pitch and are scoring goals again!”