Sunday, April 21, 2024

‘Kick Out Hunger’: Lionsbridge FC, Food Lion Game to benefit Virginia Peninsula Foodbank

(Courtesy of Lionsbridge FC)

WILLIAMSBURG — Lionsbridge Football Club (Lionsbridge FC) is teaming up with Food Lion and the Virginia Peninsula Foodbank to help address food insecurity challenges that many encounter during the summertime.

(Courtesy of Lionsbridge FC)

The three entities have come together to organize an event called Kick Out Hunger. On July 6, during the Lionsbridge FC home game at TowneBank Stadium (CNU), volunteers will be collecting non-perishable food items and monetary donations. All food items and money collected will go towards providing meals for those in the community. Lionsbridge FC will be playing against Christos Baltimore during the event.

“We’ve had a great relationship with the Virginia Peninsula Foodbank since we’ve first started playing back in 2018,” said Chairman & Co-Founder of Lionsbridge FC Mike Vest in an interview with WYDaily. “One of the things that we’ve learned, that I think some people don’t know, but it makes sense when you start to think about it, is how big of a need there is during the summer time for food donations and monetary donations to the Peninsula Foodbank because so many kids are out of school during the summer time.”

Every fan who brings five non-perishable food items or donates $10 to the food bank on the night of the game will receive a free ticket to the following Lionsbridge FC home game on July 9. They will also receive a coupon for five dollars off their next purchase from Food Lion. 

“Our goal for the July 6 game is to collect enough food or money to be able to provide 3,000 meals in our community,” said Vest. “I think that’s an ambitious one but I think that’s one that we can get to. So we’re just encouraging all of our fans to try and get the word out to make sure that people know to bring some non-perishable food items.”

A lot of kids receive their meals at school, but when school lets out for summer, the level of food insecurity goes up in the region. Vest says the goal of the event is to help address this issue. 

Lionsbridge FC has been drawing more than 1,000 fans to its games at Pomoco Stadium on the campus of CNU. (Photo courtesy of Bob Flynn)
(Photo courtesy of Bob Flynn)

“We’ve got a fan base that really cares about the community and we have great partners that really care about the community. So it was a good fit for us, for Food Lion, and for the Peninsula Foodbank to work together to create this event,” Vest said. 

Lionsbridge FC is a USL League Two summer collegiate soccer team that plays home games at Christopher Newport University. The team launched in 2018 and has grown steadily in popularity ever since. Last year, the soccer team made it to the playoffs.

“It’s grown bigger than our wildest dreams. When you’re starting something from scratch, you don’t really know what it’ll be like when it happens,” said Vest. “I think the support that we’ve had from the community is incredible. The noise of the crowd is something that still gives you goosebumps. We’re five years into it now, and it still feels like the first game. We’ve got really passionate fans.”

For more information on Lionsbridge FC and the Kick Out Hunger event, please head over to the soccer team’s official website.

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