The Airdrie Irish and the Central Alberta Buccaneers will not only compete on the gridiron of Ed Eggerer Athletic Park on Aug. 15, but the Alberta Football League (AFL) opponents will also square off to see which squad can raise the most dough for the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation (CBCF).
Matt Squires, president of the inaugural and not-for-profit AFL, said each team from the nine-team league has chosen a charity to support, but the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation was a no-brainer for the Irish.
“I, like most people I’m sure, have lost loved ones to breast cancer so it just made sense to me on a personal level and for the entire organization,” he said. “We hope the community comes out and helps us support this great cause.”
Players from the Irish and Buccaneers will be raising funds on an individual basis leading up to the contest, while fans attending the game will have an opportunity to participate in activities and purchase roses with all funds going to the CBCF.
“The community has shown our organization nothing but amazing support in our first season so we want to give back any way we can. And we feel this is the best way to do that,” Squires said.
Despite the anticipated on-field growing pains for his first-year club, which is still in search of its first victory, Squires said he hasn’t second-guessed himself on the decision to bring an AFL team to Airdrie.
“The awareness is growing,” he said. “We knew on-field success wasn’t going to happen over night. It’s difficult to start a team from scratch but once we get this year under our belt I truly believe that this can be a very successful AFL organization. We have great sponsors on board and we have been pleased with our attendance numbers this season.
“And the team is only going to develop and become more competitive,” he added. “We just have to get through these first-year struggles and hurdles to become a football team that Airdrie can be proud to call their own.”
To donate to the Irish CBCF fundraiser, contact any Irish player or email Squires at firstname.lastname@example.org