Upon making Team GB, Evie’s mum, Jo Rodwell a volunteer at Special Olympics Norfolk (SON) spearheaded a local fundraising campaign along with Long Stratton Gymnastics Club in order to accumulate at least £2,500 needed for Evie to compete in the Championships in Italy.
Among those endeavouring to help Evie make her dream trip are a group of Norfolk County FA Football Referees. Lead by Peter Venables, those officiating at Norfolk FA’s annual FDC Youth Cup, donated their match fees to Evie’s fund.
The tournament, held at the Football Development Centre, Bowthorpe saw over 100 teams compete in nearly 300 matches across the two days and at the end of the tournament, the 20 Referees were able to donate a total of £600 towards the cause.
Venables, who recently took part in a 100mile cycling trip in order to raise money for the East Anglian Air Ambulance endeavours to help a charity every year by gathering match officials willing to donate their fees from the FDC Youth Cup.
“Our aim is to help an individual cause every year, someone who needs support towards a wish or a dream. Evie and her ambitions being extremely sports orientated, fitted the bill perfectly.
“They are a lovely family and Evie is an exceptional young lady, we wish her the very best in the competition and hopes she has a great time in Italy.”
Evie’s Mum, Jo was thrilled at the support Evie has received from people all over the County and in particular highlighted the generosity of Peter and his fellow Referees.
“We are so grateful for the support we received from Peter and the Referees and humbled to have been chosen as their charity this year.
“The FDC Youth Cup was a lovely day where we were spoilt rotten, the FDC staff were wonderful to us and we were made to feel so welcome. Thanks to everyone involved.”
Norfolk County FA Chairman, Michael Banham was presenting at the tournament and was able to meet Evie and wish her well.
"I had the pleasure of meeting Evie on Sunday at the FDC Youth Cup and would like to say again, congratulations on a fine achievement. On behalf of everyone at Norfolk County FA we wish her the utmost success and will be following her throughout the competition"
It is hoped that the contribution from the Norfolk Referees will enable Evie and her family not only meet, but exceed their target, allowing her and her family to travel to Milan in November.