Young Worthing footballers raise thousands for Rockinghorse

Young football players from two Worthing youth football clubs have been using their skills to...

Young football players from two Worthing youth football clubs have been using their skills to help raise over £3,500 for Rockinghorse Children’s Charity as part of their ‘Be a Rockinghorse Hero’ campaign.

Sibling support

Albie, Phil and Lucas

Brothers, Lucas (9) and Albie (6) O’Hare from Worthing, challenged themselves to score as many penalties as they could against their dad Phil in one hour.

Lucas has been a member of AFC Worthing Youth Football Club for two years and whilst his younger brother Albie doesn’t actually play for them yet, he has become a team mascot and was an honorary member for this challenge.

During their hour of penalty kicks they scored a total of 63 goals from 311 shots and only lost two balls! Despite tiring in the last ten minutes, they kept going and managed to raise over £500 for their efforts.

Tony Puglia, Club Founder and Secretary said; “For Lucas and Albie to have raised that amount of money in such a short time is fantastic! They’ve been brilliant and we’re really proud to have them involved with the club.”

Moving forward we have chosen Rockinghorse as the club’s nominated charity for the foreseeable future and we’re really looking forward to working with them more closely and getting the rest of the club members fundraising for them.”

Showing the adults how it’s done

Worthing United Youth Football Club have also been getting involved, challenging their 300 young club members to do their own challenge to raise money for Rockinghorse.

Club Chairman Jason Nicholls explained their plan; “We decided to set our members a penalty competition challenge, ‘Spot Kicks for Sick Kids’, with our boys and girls getting sponsored to take penalties against family members.”

With the current lockdown situation, we wanted something easy for everyone to get involved with. Straight away we had our members filming themselves taking penalties against parents then the cash started appearing on our fundraising site.”

The club regularly posted videos of the spot kick sessions on their Facebook page which then encouraged other members to get involved. Along with sharpening their skills it also made the adults look very average compared with their younger opponents!

Jason has been thrilled with the results; “I was so impressed with how quickly our members rose to the challenge we set them but I knew they would all get involved in our bid to reach the target of £5,000. It is such a worthy cause and they will all be very proud of themselves when we get over the line.”

So far the club has raised over £3,000 for Rockinghorse, with the money to go towards the charity’s portable lung function machine for Worthing Hospital. The child friendly machine helps staff to get accurate, reliable and reproducible results so they can gain an accurate diagnosis of lung function in children with a range of different conditions such as asthma and cystic fibrosis.

Up for the challenge?

If you or your local club might be interested in setting a challenge for your team similar to this, just contact Hollie Trezise at: who can help you set up a Just Giving page and get started.