Widnes Vikings are delighted to announce the launch of ‘EQUALise’, a new flagship community project which aims to spread messages of equality, diversity, and inclusivity in schools across the region through the power of rugby league. The project will be officially launched at this Thursday’s Super 8’s Qualifier at home to London Broncos which will be showcased on Sky Sports.
The project, which will be delivered by the clubs charitable arm, the Vikings Sports Foundation, will be the first of its type to be delivered in rugby league, and add to an already diverse range of agendas the Vikings to deliver against which includes obesity, education, mental health and loneliness. Set to commence next month, the project will engage over 1,000 children from thirty schools in its first year across Widnes, Runcorn and Liverpool.
‘EQUALise’ has been developed off the back of the club’s partnership with leading LGBT equality and diversity rights charity, Stonewall, which has seen their Rainbow Laces campaign logo proudly adorn the players kit throughout the 2018 season. The Rainbow Laces campaign is a way for everyone involved in sport to show their support for LGBT equality and inclusivity. National teams, leading clubs, athletes, fans and grassroots players are lacing up to Come Out for LGBT people in sport. In 2017, the campaign had its most successful year yet with over 75,000 pairs of laces distributed across all areas of sport leading to 12 million adults seeing the campaign.
To enable ‘EQUALise’ to be delivered to as many children as possible across the North West, the Vikings are launching a crowdfunding effort to raise the funds for the Vikings Sports Foundation to deliver (details to be added on how people can donate). The project will focus on educating young people around equality and diversity in sport, challenge gender stereotypes, tackle bullying, explain language, celebrate difference, and most importantly promote role models.