Due to a brief summer break, this week’s quick round-up football charities is a little later than usual, but this evening we have another couple of causes related to the game which prove that, for all of the bad news that seems to be out there – and it can seem, from time to time, to be perpetual – there is still some good that can come from the heart of the game. This evening, we are delighted to be spreading the word for KitAid, Non-League Day and the Bob Wilson Soccer Cycle, but don’t forget that, if you are involved in a football-related charity project, we do this once a week on Twohundredpercent, so, if you would like your cause to be featured on this page, feel free to drop us a line via our contact page.
KitAid: Football shirts and kits, as many of you will already be more than aware, can be a very emotive subject. They are badges of allegiance for most supporters, and this is a universal habit of supporters the world over. When Derrick Williams MBE, an employee of a water company, made a charity trip to Tanzania in 1998, he was astonished by the reception that the football shirts that he took with him received when he wore them. Upon his return, Derrick set up KitAid, a charity to send unwanted football kits and supplies to Africa to reach people for whom such items may be beyond the normal reach.
Over a decade on, KitAid has sent over 100,000 football kits to some of the poorest communities in the world, in thirty different countries including Somalia, Tanzania, Uganda, Kenya, Iraq, Zanzibar and South Africa, and this is a charity for which you can do your part. KitAid, of course, depends upon your support with donations for the logistical cost of their projects as well as the actual equipment to send. You can find out a little more about how you can send them a cash donation here (as you can see, you can even make a £10 donation to them by text message), and there is also a blog which details their latest work here, as well as a Twitter account for those of you that would like regular updates by that method.
Non-League Day: It’s only the end of June, but work is already beginning for this year’s Non-League Day, which is to be held next season on the 3rd of September. As many of you will recall, the day started last year by James Doe and Mike Bayly – an occasional contributor to this very site – with the hope of raising the profile of the non-league game on a weekend when there are no Premier League or Championship fixtures due to international matches. The day was considered a great success and made a considerable number of smaller clubs some much-needed revenue, and such was its success that it is to be repeated again this year.
Twohundredpercent is fully behind this initiative – as we were last year – and you can expect to hear plenty more about it from us before the actual day itself. Non-League Day has, in no small part because of the untimely death of the non-league stalwart Tony Kempster two years ago, partnered with MacMillan Cancer Support for this year’s event, so it is also to be sincerely hoped that a good deal of money can be raised as well as raising the profile of an aspect of the British game that still receives far too little attention. The NLD website for this year should be ready shortly and will feature all the information that you could ever possibly need about the day itself and plenty more besides, but you can bookmark it here, as well as being able to see last year’s site, while the Twitter account can be found here.
Bob Wilson’s Soccer Cycle: There were few people within the game that weren’t deeply touched by the death of Anna Wilson, daughter of the former Arsenal and Scotland goalkeeper Bob Wilson, from cancer at the age of just thirty-one in 1999. Since then, The Willow Foundation – named for Anna’s nickname – has been working tirelessly since then providing Special Days for sixteen to forty year-olds that are suffering from serious illnesses, including cancer, motor neurone disease, cystic fibrosis, Duchenne muscular dystrophy, Huntington’s disease, organ failure as well as others. The foundation liaises with the beneficiary as well as their family in order to provide them with a day out to remember, and it has provided over 7,000 of these since its inception.
The Soccer Cycle has been running since April, but there is still a month left for this initiative to run, so there is plenty of time for you to still get involved. The premise is brilliantly simple. All you have to do is cycle somewhere – anywhere! – whilst raising money for the foundation. There is further information on how you can get involved here, and this page includes a downloadable particpant pack so that you can get all the information that you need on how to get started, including ideas on what you can do to help, tips on training and, possibly most importantly of all, how to raise sponsorship money. Also, being a thoroughly modern chap, Bob has a Twitter account for the charity that you can follow by clicking here.
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