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VICTORIA (ISN) – Victoria Highlanders FC announced today that Peninsula Co-op, a Vancouver Island-based cooperative, will take the much-needed position as Presenting Partner of the Highlanders Women’s First Team.  The sponsorship will also include re-branding of the team including red and white Peninsula Co-op jerseys and a new name: Peninsula Co-op Women’s Soccer.

The Highlanders acquired a women’s team in 2010, adopting the former Victoria Stars.  In 2011 the Women’s team joined the United Soccer Leagues W-League, the highest women’s league in North America.  With this move came added expenses including annual travel to both California and Colorado which lead to the Highlanders seeking a presenting sponsor for the team.  Peninsula Co-op, a grocery and petroleum business entirely owned by its members, was the perfect fit.

“Peninsula Co-op’s support of the Women’s soccer team ensures female athletes have the opportunity to compete at a very high level of soccer on Vancouver Island, following their dreams and realizing their athletic potential”, states Ron Heal of Peninsula Co-op. “Peninsula Co-op WS provides positive role models for young athletes in our community.”     

The Women’s first team and U20 team will be sporting red and white jerseys with Peninsula Co-op’s logo proudly displayed on the front.  The teams will also work closely with Peninsula Co-op, attending events to promote soccer and encouraging youth to live healthy lifestyles through sport.   “Co-op has a long standing commitment of support to the health and wellness of the communities where we live and work,” says Heal,  “We recognize and appreciate the many benefits of youth participation in sport, development of leadership skills, self-esteem, teamwork, setting and achieving goals and learning through healthy competition in addition to benefits of regular fitness.”

Highlanders FC will remain the operator of the teams despite the name change and new uniforms.  The Highlanders youth academies will also remain under the Highlanders brand.  Coast Capital Savings will continue as Title Partner of the Men’s Team, as well as a sponsor of the women’s team and academies with their logo on the backs of the women’s jerseys. “Our sponsors play a significant role in supporting the Club, whether it be an individual donor, small business or large corporation”, states owner Alex Campbell, “We value every sponsor and the Club would not exist without the continued support from the community.  We welcome Peninsula Co-op to the Highlanders Family.”