Football boots have been swapped for cycling shoes and trainers as Wolves Women ride, row and run their way from Wolverhampton to California in a virtual charity challenge to raise funds for Compton Care, the palliative care provider whose base is close to the football club’s training ground.
Midway through the month-long challenge, Team Wolves Women have crossed the Atlantic and have already gone past the half-way point of both the 5,331-mile trek from Compton, Wolverhampton to Compton, California and their fundraising target of £5,000 to aid the vital work of Compton Care.
The virtual challenge is being taken on by all of the players, from the first team squad to youngsters in the Wolves Regional Talent Club, plus the management and coaching staff. “It’s a complete team effort,” says captain Anna Price, whose initial contact with Compton Care led to the novel fundraiser.
“It all started with a call I had from Kate Kelly, the Community and Events Manager at Compton Care,” explains Price. “Kate asked if we might be able to help raise the profile of the charity in terms of fundraising, which has become difficult with lots of events cancelled because of the coronavirus situation.
“I then had a chat with Dan McNamara (Wolves Women team manager), and it was Dan who came up with the idea of the Compton to Compton challenge. We aimed to start and finish it in May and it’s gone really well so far. The players are loving it and what we are doing is for a great cause.
“Compton Care do a fantastic job for local people with incurable illnesses and we are very happy to be supporting them. With no football to be played during the pandemic, the challenge has also kept us together as players and staff and without doubt it’s keeping our fitness levels well up to scratch.
“We’ve suddenly become mad cyclists! I got my bike out of the garage for the first time in about eight years to get some miles in. Other players have done the same, and some have even bought new bikes to play their part. A lot of us are also running, and some of the girls are using rowing machines for their miles.
“Our efforts are being very closely monitored – every run, row or ride we take is recorded and the figures are totted up by our staff. We’ve also been taking videos of ourselves to put on social media in the hope that it will keep the interest in the challenge going and, most importantly, keep fundraising donations coming in.”
Having had their football season ‘null and voided’ by the FA due to the pandemic, Wolves Women have been denied what looked like certain promotion after a near faultless campaign. Everyone involved at the club was understandably distraught but, says Price, morale has been lifted by the charity challenge.
“We were all devastated when we heard about the FA decision,” admits Price. “To miss out on the prize we’d worked so hard for was a bitter disappointment and that will stay with us forever. But we couldn’t keep dwelling on it and this challenge we’ve take on has given us a new focus and passion.”
Wolves supporters can get behind the efforts of Wolves Women and Girls and donate to the vital work carried out by Compton Care by clicking here.
Updates on the how the players are getting on with the challenge throughout the month will be posted on the Wolves Women social media pages.