New England Patriots Sponsor Providence, Boston LGBTQ Flag Football Leagues
Super Bowl Champions support premier leagues for LGBTQ communities
PROVIDENCE, RI and BOSTON, MA (September 26, 2019) – The Providence Gay Flag Football League (PVDGFFL) and Boston FLAG (Friends, Lesbians and Gays) Flag Football League are proud to announce individual sponsorships from the reigning Super Bowl Champions, the New England Patriots. These premier flag football leagues for the LGBTQ community kicked off their
fall seasons earlier this month with additional support from their National Football League hometown team.
“We’re happy to once again be partnering with the FLAG Flag Football league and are thrilled that there is now a Providence league as part of Patriots nation,” said Josh Kraft, president of the New England Patriots Charitable Foundation. “Both leagues represent the vision of LGBTQ inclusiveness and marriage equality that the Patriots embrace.”
The bulk of the sponsorship will be used to make the league more affordable to players who may not be able to participate otherwise. Additionally, funds will go towards the league’s participation in the 2019 Gay Bowl in New York City, keeping costs low in order to make the experience available to as many players as possible.
"Our league, in its first year, has already had an incredible impact on the Rhode Island LGBTQ community,” said Duane Gosley, Providence Gay Flag Football League Commissioner. “With support from the New England Patriots, we will be able to increase our recruitment and outreach programs within our local community. The Patriots sponsorship sends a powerful message recognizing the benefits leagues like ours have to improve the health and well-being of the community we serve."
The recreational football clubs strive to build relationships and break down stereotypes between LGBTQ and allied teammates and foster an environment where LGBTQ persons can learn about and participate in a team sport - many for the first time in their lives. This fall, 24 teams and more than 350 players in Boston and 11 teams and 162 participants in Providence will compete weekly in their respective cities. Additionally, 8 travel teams between the two cities will attend tournaments nation-wide, including Gay Bowl XIX in New York City.
“It is truly an honor to be entering our 21st year of FLAG Flag Football with the unwavering support of the New England Patriots,” said FLAG Flag Football Boston Commissioner, Ken Westermann. “Through the funding of our travel team program for this year’s Gay Bowl in New York City, to expanding the overall reach and impact on the local community that we make playing the sport of football, we are excited for the Patriots to join us in our league’s mission of transforming lives through sport for the LGBTQ and ally community.
Providence Gay Flag Football League, a registered 501(c)(3) charitable organization, serves the Rhode Island LGBTQ community. Founded in 2018, the organization's goal is to create a safe and inclusive environment where people, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity, can participate in a competitive and friendly team sport, develop a social support system, and build lifelong friendships. In addition to football, the league has partnered with other area non-profit organizations to donate time and resources to improve the lives of LGBTQ people in Rhode Island. In 2019 the league has already given back more than 200 hours of community service.
About FLAG Flag Football
FLAG (Friends, Lesbians and Gays) Flag Football is Boston’s premiere flag football league for the LGBTQ and ally community, and a registered 501(c)(3) charitable organization. Founded in 1998, the league tackles stereotypes and transforms lives through sport, while providing a comfortable and enjoyable setting and a sense of community. The organization is devoted to giving back through extensive volunteering with more than 1,400 hours of community service logged in 2016. Additionally, the league is dedicated to empowering LGBTQ youth by funding youth attendance to Camp Lightbulb, a LGBTQ youth summer camp in Provincetown, organizing field days for local high school students and leaders, and for the past five years providing an annual scholarship to a Massachusetts graduating high school senior.
Commissioner, Providence Gay Flag Football League
Commissioner, FLAG Flag Football - Boston