Cambridge University Netball Club to race Oxford the length of the UK to raise money for charity
Cambridge University Ladies’ Netball Club are attempting to raise £3,000 for Cambridge Women’s Aid
CN: Discussions of domestic abuse and violence against women
Starting on 6th March, Cambridge University Ladies’ Netball Club (CULNC) will race Oxford University Netball Club the length of the UK to raise money for Cambridge Women’s Aid, in place of their usual Varsity Match this term.
The two netball clubs will compete to be the first club to cover the 1753km, as well as raise the most money for their chosen charity.
CULNC aims to raise £3,000 for Cambridge Women’s Aid and has currently raised 28 per cent of their target.
Rosie Schofield, President of CULNC, told The Tab Cambridge: “It’s such a great opportunity for us to unite as a club, despite being spread out across the country, to raise lots of money for a fantastic cause and push ourselves to do something really positive at a time of such uncertainty.
“At CULNC, like so many students across the country, we’re missing sport and we’re missing each other. When we realised that this new lockdown would also mean cancelling our annual varsity match, we knew we’d need to find a different way to beat Oxford this year, but also to replace the camaraderie and achievement such an event brings.
“What the race this year also adds to this is the opportunity to uplift and empower other women, beyond our own community, which I think is a fantastic way to use our time, training and teamwork.”
CULNC chose to support Cambridge Women’s Aid due to the work it does supporting vulnerable women and children who have been placed at a higher risk due to successive national lockdowns.
Whilst the current ‘stay at home’ orders do not apply to women facing domestic abuse, an investigation by BBC’s Panorama last year revealed that more than two-thirds of women in abusive relationships suffered increased violence from their partner during the pandemic. During the first seven weeks of lockdown in 2020, there was one domestic abuse call to the police every thirty seconds.
The money raised by CULNC will enable Cambridge Women’s Aid to continue providing dedicated and specialist services to women and children affected by domestic abuse. The charity provides online information and advice, safe refuge in Cambridge, and support groups for women affected by domestic abuse.
Ciara Agnew, Club Captain, highlighted the significance of the cause for the netball club: “Domestic abuse is far more prevalent in the UK than anyone would like to admit and the current pandemic has only made the situation more dire.
“CULNC has always been a place for women to excel whilst feeling supported and empowered by their teammates. We believe every woman deserves to feel the same way. That is why we’re proud to be supporting Cambridge Women’s Aid vital work with survivors of domestic abuse.”
As International Women’s Day on 8th March approaches, the importance of adequately funding domestic abuse services has been spotlighted. Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak has recently announced that the new Budget will include an extra £19 million in funding for domestic violence programmes, on top of the £125 million announced last month. However, Women’s Aid estimates that £393 million is required for lifesaving refuges and community-based services in England.
Featured image credit and all image credits: Cambridge University Ladies’ Netball Club
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