A women’s football group, set up by Al Rhind-Tutt, donates £500 a month to food banks in Sheffield.
The Sheffield group Football for Food Banks was set up in 2020 by Matty Cassell. Their aim was to do something good with the money they had left over after paying pitch fees.
Al Rhind-Tutt joined later in the year and setting up the women’s team. She said: “We wanted to make something safe, inclusive, and accessible for women and non-binary people of all ages and abilities to come and play a friendly game of football, while also doing a bit of good for the local community.”
Since the women’s football group was set up two years ago, over 200 people have joined in a match.
Al said: “I think it’s incredibly important for girl’s football groups to be made. It’s so good to see more and more girl groups being set up, and that they now have adult women players to look up to as well. If you can’t see it, you can’t be it and having girls football groups shows them that they can be it.
“While football has been an overwhelming positive in my life, I think any woman player can tell you about a bad experience she’s had. There’s still a lot of stigma around women and gender minorities playing football, I’ve been called homophobic slurs while walking down the road in my kit. We once had to move pitches because the one we were playing on bordered a park and men walking past were catcalling or criticising us.”
The group typically plays 5 or 6 aside and is very casual, running on a ‘play when you can’ basis. They play three games a week costing £4 per person, £1 for anyone struggling financially. Any surplus after pitch fees goes into the foodbank pot.
Al said: “I think the way we help the community is twofold. Firstly, by providing a safe and inclusive environment for women and gender minorities to enjoy sport. Secondly by supporting charities that help people in the community when they need it the most.”