The Wildcats next home game on Monday 8th July will feature one significant difference to other matches at the Rapid Solicitors Stadium this season.
That’s because the Wildcats will run-out in a one-off shirt that will raise awareness and funds for Heart Research UK. The shirts will be revealed soon ahead of the game against Widnes Vikings which will be played out in front of the Sky Sports cameras.
The match worn shirts will be available for supporters to bid on on Ebay in the weeks after the game and each match ticket will have an additional £1 charge to generate funds for a long standing community partner of the Wildcats Community Trust, now the Wakefield Community Trust.
Club chaplain Jon Robinson has already ran the Leeds half marathon as part of the fundraising efforts and around 200 schoolchildren will perform a song written especially for the occasion.
It’s the second successive year that the Wildcats have supported a charity on Monday night rugby league. In 2012, the Wildcats raised several thousand pounds for Wakefield Hospice with similar activity in the home win over Leeds Rhinos.
Wakefield Wildcats and Heart Research UK have been working together for six years with the Wakefield Wildcats Community Trust programme starting their project by going into schools to teach children the importance of staying fit and healthy.
The project saw the Trust go into schools across Wakefield informing children of the risks not exercising enough and living an unhealthy lifestyle could have on their heart.
To help the young people maintain a healthy lifestyle the Community Trust offered pupils physical education through rugby coaching which offered five weeks of rugby training for boys and girls, culminating in the schools participating in festivals at the Rapid Solicitors Stadium. Following the outstanding response to this project and to appeal to an even wider audience the Wildcats also introduced dance classes into schools.
With the success of the dance and rugby sessions the Trust was asked to spread the project further afield to schools in Dewsbury, Batley and Barnsley. This has also seen the creation of the Wildcat Kittens, a junior dance group and initiatives such as the ‘Dads and Lads’ touch rugby league and adult dance classes in the hope of keeping adults healthy too. The model that Wakefield have used has since been replicated in other areas of the North to deliver Heart Research’s prevention messages
All of this work saw the Trust presented with a Special Recognition Award in 2012.
Wildcats General Manger, Davide Longo, sees this as the next step in the two organisations working together.
“We’ve had a great relationship with Heart Research UK for a number of years now and they’ve enabled the Trust to do a lot of good work in the local community to keep people fit and active.
“It’s a charity that has extra meaning to everyone associated with the club given the tragedies that have occurred in the recent past and we’re sure that the night will be a great success both in terms of fundraising and awareness.”
Heart Research UK was formed 45 years ago in the hope to find preventions and research into heart disease. Over the years they have worked tirelessly to inform the UK about the risks of keeping healthy and looking after your heart and helping the UK fight heart problems. With their campaigning and events the charity raises money to help those suffering and to fund their research into one of the world’s biggest killers.
Buy your tickets from the Wildcats retail store at the Ridings Centre, the Rapid Solicitors Stadium Box Office, by calling 01924 201548/211611 or online.
This is Wakefield. Together We Are Stronger.