Charity calender raises funds for Sport Allies

This year the Rowers – all students from the Warwick University rowing team – took themselves to outstanding garden locations in the UK and Spain for a ten-day shoot, resulting in a series of incredible images and a cheeky campaign video!

The Rowers aren’t just getting undressed for the sake of it: there’s a serious message behind the nudity. The money raised from the calendar goes towards helping end homophobia in sport.

Sales of Warwick Rowers products have enabled the foundation, Sport Allies, a registered charity promoting greater LGBT inclusion and more gender equality in sport. The rowers – who all class themselves as allies – believe sport should help fulfil potential, regardless of gender or sexuality.

A recent report by Sport Allies, launched in the House of Commons by Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee chair Damian Collins, suggested homophobic language should be banned in sport at all levels to make the pitch, field, court or river a more welcoming place for LGBT people.

The Warwick Rowers first released a calendar in 2009 to raise funds for the university boat club. The shoot took place in one day, in the freezing cold, and it raised a lowly £300. Now it raises a six-figure sum every year, with celebrity fans including Kris Jenner, Kylie Minogue and Sir Ian McKellen.

In addition to the calendar, Warwick Rowers fans can pick up behind-the-scenes films of the photoshoots in England and Spain, as well as a coffee table book, a brand new designer onesie that means everyone can be a Warwick Rower, and a twelve month digital subscription – new to 2018 – which means the Warwick Rowers are not just for Christmas!

Angus Malcolm, producer of the Warwick Rowers calendar and LGBT rights activist, said:

“This year’s project was a huge collaborative effort, but the lads were happy to get naked for ten whole days to make sure we made the 2018 calendar the best one yet.

“The Warwick Rowers fan base, not surprisingly, is mainly women and gay men, so every year we give back by donating money to Sport Allies, a charity founded on the back of support from the calendar, to challenge homophobia and gender bias in sport. It is a topic we address in detail in the Sport Allies report, ‘Homophobia, Gender and Sporting Culture’.”