Concern Worldwide

It’s difficult to convey the plight of utter poverty to people living in the comfort of the United States. Yes, we get that many are less fortunate in distant lands, but there are many worthy causes competing for donations. For an international relief group to compel someone to write a check, they must connect with both the head and heart.

Sports for Peace is about children from various Somali clans coming together to play in international competitions while their country was in turmoil. Supported by Concern, a Dublin-based not-for-profit, they funded the club’s domestic tour–keep in mind: no one traveled the country easily, obstacles like teenage militia, dirt highways laced with landmines, and a lack of service stations for a flat tire or other mechanical problem were just a sample of the tour’s challenges. And yet this team drove thousands of miles  with not a single weapon for protection, just soccer balls and the message of peace. Our story created awareness and generated significant funding for this remarkable Mogadishu-based outfit. Here’s a copy of the story written for Concern: Soccer

 

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Bleacher seats: Somali Style
Bleacher seats: Somali Style
Pre-game warm up. Notice the pitch is dirt, not grass.
Pre-game warm up. Notice the pitch is dirt, not grass.
In most countries training involves the weight room and practice games, for the Elman Squad it involved pushing the bus when it got stuck in the sand.
In most countries training involves the weight room and practice games, for the Elman Squad it involved pushing the bus when it got stuck in the sand.