ANGELS United, the team based at Mossley Football Club, is about to mark its first birthday with a special match.
They are to play Sands United, a still birth and neo-natal death charity with whom they are closely linked, at Emmaus Mossley Seel Park on Sunday, October 10, kick off 10.45am. Admission is free.
And Angels’ first anniversary, which is on October 15, also coincides fittingly with Baby Loss Awareness Week
The team was set up in October 2020 by a group of dads who have all suffered the heartbreak and devastation of losing a child.
It was initially started by 14 dads but there are now 26 members of the WhatsApp group and they provide support not only for dads but also other family members.
And they forged links with the Lilywhites after making a pitch for funding at an event attended by Mossley manager David Fish.
Co-founder Olly Monk said: “We are more than a football club but also a support group to help families who have gone through baby loss, whether it be miscarriage, still birth, neo-natal or up to the age of 18.
“We have a mums’ group and any family member who has suffered a loss can get involved and have a chat.
“You don’t have to be a brilliant footballer. It is a chance to get to know someone who had a similar experience to yourself which can be a huge help mentally and physically.”
They train at Great Academy, Ashton, and play friendlies against other charities.
Olly believes their message may be lost were they to join a competitive league.
Olly, whose twin daughters Dottie and Poppy were ‘born sleeping’ aged 23 weeks, said: “Our message is come to us at your darkest time, and we will help you come through it.
“We are one big family, and we can help anyone who has suffered a loss by chatting and sharing our experiences.”
Angels United can be contacted on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and further information can be found at www.angelsunited.co.uk