19th April 2018 14:28pm
Charlton Athletic, in association with the Proud Valiants and Charlton Athletic Community Trust (CACT), will host the third annual Charlton v Homophobia tournament at The Valley in May to help raise the profile of LGBTQI+ football.
This year’s tournament will be under the floodlights for the first time, taking place on Tuesday 22 May with four LGBTQI+ friendly teams taking part in a round-robin 11-a-side tournament.
Teams already confirmed for this year’s tournament include:
- Proud Valiants – the official Charlton Athletic supporters groups for LGBTQI+ fans
- CACT Invicta FC (CIFC) – the first ever dedicated LGBT-friendly football team to be affiliated with a professional football club's community trust
Two further teams will be announced in due course.
Last year’s tournament was a huge success and contributed to Charlton Athletic and its Community Trust winning the London regional award for Community Club of the Year at the 2018 EFL Awards.
The tournament continues the club and CACT's commitment to raising the profile of LGBTQI+ football which includes:
- The continued support of the Proud Valiants, one of the country’s first supporter groups for LGBTQI+ people
- CACT affiliating with CIFC
- CACT delivering a wide range of programmes designed to promote equality and tackle discrimination, including issues relating to identity, gender and prejudice
Chairperson of the Proud Valiants Rob Harris said:
“The Proud Valiants are extremely proud to be co-hosting this event now in its third year. This tournament is so important in so many ways, for example to younger fans who may be dealing with issues around their sexuality and may feel isolated - they see an event like this and hopefully realise they are not alone.
“It is also a clear statement to all fans that the club, Trust and everyone involved celebrate diversity and will not tolerate discrimination. For the players this a really fun and competitive event - this year especially with the chance to play under the floodlights.
“As a free event it’s the chance for fans to come and have a fun evening at The Valley supporting a great cause.”
Charlton season ticket holder and CACT Invicta Player/Manager Gary Ginnaw said:
“CACT Invicta are incredibly delighted to be taking part at the third annual Charlton v Homophobia tournament on 22nd May 2018 and to play under the floodlights at The Valley will be a special occasion.
“The 2017/18 season has been a very successful one both on and off the pitch with Invicta formally affiliating with Charlton Athletic Community Trust, becoming a formal part of the Charlton Family in the process and winning the London Unity League.
“The 2018 Charlton v Homophobia tournament will represent an opportunity to once again reaffirm the point that equality and inclusion in football, as well as tactically homophobia, are fundamentally important and Charlton Athletic are leading the way.”
To learn more about the Proud Valiants or to join the group please email email@example.com.