Canterbury’s £10,000 FWD Fund is knocking down financial barriers to encourage more women to take part in grassroots rugby. The FWD Fund, which is now open for applications until the 31st August, is designed to grow the women’s game by encouraging participation in the sport.
Research from Women in Sport shows that more than one million girls gave up on sport as a teenager* and that girls experienced more mental health worries than boys due to the pandemic.**
Canterbury is determined to reverse this trend by providing more opportunities for girls and women to find their home in rugby. By encouraging girls and women to participate in the sport, the brand aims to improve physical and mental wellbeing and cultivate crucial social and teamwork skills.
First launched in 2022, the FWD Fund supports rugby players, coaches, supporters or grassroots clubs with kit, equipment or funding. Players of any code of the game can apply, from rugby union and league to tag or wheelchair rugby.
This year, the funding will be allocated by a selection panel including renowned athletes and Canterbury ambassadors Ellie Kildunne, Zainab Alema and Sam Warburton.
Last year the FWD Fund supported 16 UK clubs, impacting around 400 players. It also funded 200 custom-designed kits, six after-school rugby clubs, four professional coaching courses and one team’s childcare for an entire season.
This initiative is part of Canterbury’s Forward To Fifty programme, which aims to achieve equal participation of men and women in rugby by breaking down entry barriers to the sport.
If you play or support women’s rugby and want to benefit from this initiative, the FWD Fund is now open for applications until 31st August. Interested players, clubs and communities from the UK and Ireland can apply here.