LOUDOUN COUNTY, Va. — The Loudoun Soccer Under 16 girls soccer team in the Elite Clubs National League (ECNL) is doing their part to help neighbors battling food insecurity. They are participating in the Kickin' Hunger charity marathon with donations going toward Feeding America.
So far, the team has raised more than $20,000 for the charity.
Over the course of two weeks, each of the girls on the team will run 26.2 miles -- the length of a marathon -- while asking for donations. All of those donations go to Feeding America.
"I think our team wanted to do something to help out in the community, and after COVID and all the world crises going on, food insecurity has been a big struggle," said player Catherine Webster.
In 2021, 53 million people turned to food banks for help putting food on the table. Feeding America supports more than 200 local food banks that feed millions of people through food pantries, soup kitchens, and shelters.
"We talk about intensity on the team all the time, and the girls are intense both on and off the field," said coach Phil Liversedge. "I think the intensity has carried over into the fundraising efforts. They've pushed and they've strived and they've chased up people and talked about the reasons why they're doing it. They've worked really hard."
Julia Rollison said running a marathon during the team's off season helped keep them in shape.
"It wasn't too difficult but it was really good for pre-season because it got us into really good shape, and it was really good motivation for us because obviously we're not just running just to run -- we're raising money for it, so it was a really good cause," Rollison said.
At last check, the girls raised $23,900.
"Going into this we didn't think we would be able to raise that much, and we all doubled the amount we thought we would," said teammate Lizzie Thornton.
For more information, and to donate to the team, click here.