Young football players from Fernie United football club have teamed up to donate football uniforms, cleats and equipment to a village in Rwanda.

The U12 boys and U13 girls teams collected a respectable pile of loot from equipment that went unused.

“These are two teams that are pretty active during normal times,” said Markus Glickman, U12 boys coach. “They are a pretty successful bunch.”

Glickman said the teams with COVID-19 and the lack of competitive games were looking for ways to be a part of the wider football world anyway.

“(We thought) football is the world game. Is there anything we can do to strengthen this connection with part of a world community of football players?”

Glickman said given that the young players were of an age where they were growing very quickly and never completely used up their soccer gear before they grew out of it, it made something special to be able to pass it on to the less fortunate.

“It just seemed like a very logical thing that there are children out there who know that these studs are one of the special things they own.”

Glickman, along with U12 coach Gary Joynes and U13 girls coach Sarah Ingram, grabbed equipment to donate, and the response was “instantly and from the heart,” said Glickman.

The football equipment will be donated to young players in the village of Gashora in Rwanda, a village about 50 km outside the capital Kigali.

The donated equipment will go through the small NGO Journey House Actions, which aims to support families in the village of Gashora by combating chronic problems that plague the small African nation through various youth empowerment and education programs and cooperation programs.

One of those programs is called Real Moon Academic Football – a program that started after JHA organizers got their hands on some used soccer balls.

Hopefully, with the donations from the young players on Fernie, the aspiring young soccer players in Gashora will have a long way to go.

READ MORE: Fernie’s football team makes history

scott.tibballs@thefreepress.ca
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Charity and fundraising football

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