On Saturday 11 June, Alan Dowson, Dartford FC’s new Manager, led the Youth

Academy Coaching Team to a 5-0 victory over Charlton Invicta in a football

match to raise funds for local charity Abigail’s Footsteps

On Saturday 11 June, the Dartford Youth Academy Coaching team was joined by Dartford FC‘s New

Manager Alan Dowson in a charity game which raised £1,652 for Abigail’s Footsteps, which provides

support for bereaved families.

The game was organised by Dartford’s Development Phase Lead, Zach Bowden and Head of Youth

Development Russ Searle who was supported by Abigail’s Footsteps when his wife delivered a still

born baby four years ago.

The supporters watched a goalless first half, but the home team’s half time team talk brought out a

new determined Dartford side for the second half and the crowd saw goals from Zach Bowden 2,

Emmanuel Oyefesobi 2, and Lee Smith.

Alan Dowse, Dartford FC Manager, said, “It was a very good atmosphere today, everybody enjoying

themselves and it was for a magical cause too which everyone had bought into, and I was very glad

that it’s raised a lot of money.”

Russ Searle, Head of Youth Development, Dartford, said “Four and a half years ago we had a still born

baby Ronnie. Abigail’s Footsteps helped us straight away and we wanted to put this game on to try

and raise some funds and awareness of the great work they do. As soon as we announced the match

everyone jumped straight in to say they wanted to help, and we are delighted to have had such a big

turnout for a fantastic day.”

David Ward, Co-Founder & CEO, Abigail’s Footsteps said, “Fundraising events like this are a great way

to raise vital funds to support our charity and the work we do in the community with bereaved

parents, but more importantly, it’s about raising awareness of baby loss, this year we commemorate

12 years since we started the charity in memory of our daughter Abigail. We would like to thank Russ

and all his team for making this event a success.”

The Youth Academy at Dartford FC forms part of the player pathway to first team football at the club.

The aim of the Youth Academy is to create a learning environment where talented young players

aged 7-16, many of whom have been at professional clubs, can continue to progress.

To enquire about Dartford Youth Academy player vacancies for the 2022/2023 season please visit http://www.facebook.com/DartfordFCPreAcademy