CFU are working with the club to make the Abbey an even more welcoming place for everyone in our local community. You’ll have heard about the meeting with leaders at the mosque on Mill Road, and there are plans to help support fans with dementia, and disabilities. Another project which supports our female fans began in April: the online Amber Belles community.
You might wonder why the group is needed at all. In the last 20-30 years, there’s been a welcome increase in the number of female fans going to matches across the country. There’s solid evidence that a larger female and family element within the crowd improves the matchday atmosphere. Despite this, there is still an undercurrent of sexism aimed at females who love football. Sad, but true.
This has led to some female fans feeling unable to contribute to online chats – and that just isn’t right. The Amber Belles group offers everyone a place to chat about our wonderful club in a safe and welcoming environment.
It’s also a space where we can bring up female-related issues at the ground. There might be things that we can talk about openly, but there’s also the chance to speak confidentially. Whatever it is, we’ll do everything we can to help.
Within a month the group had 100 members and it’s continuing to grow. We helped each other through the end-of-season nerves (of which there were many!) and celebrated together. We’re now talking about which grounds we’re looking forward to visiting, assuming restrictions allow. Fingers crossed…
We’d love to reach out to more female football fans in the Cambridge area, let them know that the Abbey is the place to be and remove any concerns about the matchday experience. Next season, we hope to offer a meet-and-greet for first-timers to the Abbey and perhaps a buddy system too, for female fans who might be nervous about coming.
And you can bet your life we’ll have some Amber Belles pub socials too!
It’s a calm, supportive, happy group. You’ll find us on Facebook: search for “Amber Belles”
Open to all U’s fans – regardless of gender – who support our aims.
Cambridge Fans United