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Sports Stars inspire fundraisers to change the world – #OneChallenge at a time

10 October 2017

  • Virgin Money Giving and Women’s Sport Trust launch a series of new short films featuring UK’s leading sporting stars
  • The athletes discuss the challenges they’ve overcome on their way to sporting glory
  • Films aim to inspire fundraisers to change the world - #Onechallenge at a time

Virgin Money Giving and Women’s Sport Trust have launched a series of short films featuring some of the UK’s leading sportswomen highlighting the challenges they’ve overcome on their way to achieving success.

The eleven films feature female sports stars including cricketer Charlotte Edwards, swimmer Ellie Simmonds and rower Katherine Grainger, plus long-jumper Greg Rutherford and sports campaigner Davina McCall. In the films, the sporting icons discuss thought provoking topics such as: body image; coaching; male / female pay gap; obsession; adventure; overcoming adversity; the power of motivation and the perils of sporting parenthood. The films also showcase how equality is important in improving sport for all.

Virgin Money Giving and Women’s Sport Trust hope the films will act as inspiration to both female and male fundraisers taking on challenges and facing their own adversities, but who still aspire to ‘Change the World’ one challenge at a time.

Gail Emms MBE, Olympic badminton silver medallist said: “Between competing, training, traveling, resting, fretting... probably the last thing athletes do is talk to one another. Not fellow sportswomen from different sports anyway. The #OneChallenge series gave us that radical opportunity and we absolutely loved it. No subject was off limits - from love, loss, muscle, money, regret, joy and, believe it or not, opening a dachshund hotel - we pretty much covered it all. I’d love to thank Virgin Money Giving and the Women’s Sport Trust for making it happen and hope that everyone who watches the films gets a huge amount of entertainment and inspiration from them.”

Audrey Livingston, who recently completed the Dracula Three Peaks challenge said: “Seeing the films for the first time and hearing from these sporting icons discuss a range of issues was fascinating. The films highlighted that they share the same worries, concerns etc. as ordinary fundraisers but instead of using them as a negative they’ve turned them around and used them as a positive motivator. Any one taking on a challenge should definitely watch the films. They’re really inspirational and can help you achieve your particular fundraising goal and help to change the world, one challenge at a time!”

Tammy Parlour, Women’s Sport Trust said: “The Women’s Sport Trust is delighted to collaborate with Virgin Money Giving in the production of the #OneChallenge film series to demonstrate how fabulous our sports women can be as role models, inspirations and people. Through laughter, tears and revelations, we learned so much about what makes female athletes (and Greg Rutherford, our guest male sportsman) tick and why sport is so much more than crossing finish lines or scoring the winning goal. It’s about facing challenges and being brave, supported and being honest enough to overcome them.”

Jo Barnett, Executive Director of Virgin Money Giving said: “Virgin Money Giving and Women’s Sport Trust are proud to support these films that celebrate the success of these female sporting icons. They highlight both the challenges and the triumphs, something that many of our fundraisers can relate to. We hope that through these films and Virgin Money Giving’s ongoing support for charities we will inspire future fundraisers to ‘Change the World - one challenge at a time!”

The full series of videos is available at

Virgin Money Giving has helped raise over £560 million for charities since launching in 2009.


Virgin Money Giving Executive Director, Jo Barnett, chats with Paralympian Sophie Christiansen

Olympian Goldie Sayers chats with England rugby star Maggie Alphonsi and sportswriter, Sue Mott

Media Contacts

Virgin Money Press Office:

0191 279 4676


The full list of films are:

1Kate Richardson-Walsh OBE (Olympic hockey gold medallist)
Charlotte Edwards CBE (former England cricket captain)
2Gail Emms MBE (Olympic badminton silver medallist)
Becky James (Olympic cycling 2 x silver medallist)
3Kadeena Cox MBE (Paralympic cycling and athletics 2 x gold medallist)
Ellie Simmonds OBE (Paralympic swimming 5 x gold medallist)
4Dame Katherine Grainger (Olympic rowing 4 x gold medallist)
5Maggie Alphonsi MBE (England Rugby World Cup Winner)
Goldie Sayers (Olympic Javelin bronze medallist)
6Judy Murray OBE (tennis coach & Women’s Sports campaigner)
Kelly Smith MBE (England and Arsenal footballer)
7Lizzie Kelly (national hunt jockey)
Sophie Christiansen CBE (Paralympic dressage 8 x gold medallist)
8Greg Rutherford MBE (Olympic long-jump gold medallist)
Claire Harvey (Paralympian and British javelin/discus record holder)
9Jenny Jones (Olympic snowboarding bronze medallist)
Emily Evans (Great British World Rafting champion)
10Davina McCall (television personality and sports campaigner)
Asha Philip (Olympic athletics bronze medallist)
11Martine Wright MBE (Volleyball Paralympian)
Michelle Partington (Invictus athlete and former paramedic in Afghanistan)

About Virgin Money Giving

  • Virgin Money Giving is the not-for-profit online fundraising website from Virgin Money and was established in 2009. Virgin Money uses its infrastructure and expertise as a financial services business to ensure that Virgin Money Giving is efficient and secure.
  • More than 13,000 charities have registered with Virgin Money Giving and, by the end of June 2017, over £560 million had been donated to charities through the service since its launch in 2009, resulting in an estimated £17.9 million more donated to charities because of its not-for-profit model.
  • Fundraisers can personalise their fundraising pages, send out email alerts and manage their fundraising events. They can include their own content, photos and links to their page as well as customise messages for their supporters and link their page to social networking sites. Virgin Money Giving provides fundraising ideas and tips, offering help and advice on how to raise more for charity. In addition to supporting individual fundraisers, Virgin Money Giving also supports Appeals, Corporate and In Memory fundraising.
  • Virgin Money Giving is the official fundraising partner of events that include the Virgin Money London Marathon, Swim Serpentine, Prudential Ride London and the Royal Parks Half Marathon.

About Women’s Sport Trust

  • Women’s Sport Trust raises the visibility and increases the impact of women’s sport through the promotion of diverse athlete role models, increasing media coverage and improving the funding landscape. We are a leading UK charity focused on using the power of sport to accelerate gender equality and stimulate social change.