Saddlers stars visit Acorns and celebrate scoring fundraising success

Acorns staff and families playing table ping pong with Walsall FC team

Young football fans scored a victory on Thursday (27 July) as stars from Walsall FC paid a special visit to Acorns Children’s Hospice in the Black Country.

Head Coach Mat Sadler, team Captain Donervon Daniels and Goalkeeper Owen Evans took a break from training to spend time with children, families, staff and volunteers at the hospice in Walstead Road.

The good sports took part in football-themed games and crafts and enjoyed tasty cupcakes iced in Walsall FC’s red and white colours.


Another season of support

The visit also celebrated yet another year of support for Acorns as one of the Club’s official charity partners, with over £7,000 raised during this season towards Acorns and its care for children with life limiting and life threatening conditions.

Walsall FC Head Coach Mat Sadler said: “Acorns plays such a vital role in our community and we want to continue to support them and grow our connection with the hospice. We want to show them just how much they mean to us as our official charity partners by doing all we can to enhance our already strong relationship with everyone here.

This season’s fundraising success marks four years of Club and fan support for Acorns in the Black Country and the 200 children and families who rely on its care each year.

“It has been great to come down to the hospice today and take part in some of the games with the children who are here. Bringing some of the squad along as well further strengthens the bond that we are looking to continuously grow with the local community and I hope this is the first of many visits to come.”

Saving our Walsall hospice

Walsall FC was among the first organisations to join the campaign to save the long-term future of the local lifeline after it was placed at risk of closure due to financial difficulties in 2019.

The Saddlers raised over £10,000 towards the Save Acorns Black Country Hospice Appeal, which successfully secured the long-term future of the Walsall-based facility.

More recently, the Club announced Acorns as their official charity partner for the 2022/23 season, raising vital funds and awareness of the charity’s Room to Grow Appeal to help to modernise the spaces at the hospice where children and families spend precious time.


Stronger Together

Carmel Caldicott, Matron at Acorns in the Black Country, said: “We’ve all had such a fun afternoon! The children always look forward to the Club’s visits and seeing the players – they’re all huge footballs fans and love getting involved in sporty crafts and activities.

“We’re so grateful to Walsall FC and Saddlers fans for really taking Acorns into their hearts and giving us such amazing support year after year. We couldn’t continue our lifeline care and support without the backing of local organisations like Walsall FC.

“Not only does the Club raise vital funds, but they also really help to spread the word about the work we do and our children’s hospice care. It’s a wonderful example of how we really are stronger together.”

Acorns needs £27,000 each day to provide its children’s hospice care, with around 65% of these funds coming from the local community and partnerships with local businesses and sporting clubs like Walsall FC.

Find out how you can help Acorns be Stronger Together.


For more information or for interview, photograph or filming opportunities, contact the PR and Communications team at

Notes to editors:

Due to the sensitive nature of Acorns care services it refrains from using the words ‘terminal’ or ‘terminally ill’ in its press releases and public communications when describing the children who use Acorns and the conditions that they have. Instead, Acorns uses the words ‘life limited’, ‘life limiting’, or ‘life threatening’. Acorns kindly requests that you respect this in your communications when referring to Acorns Children’s Hospice. Acorns children have a lot of living to do. Thank you.