As well as its flagship international projects with global charity partner, Save the Children, The Arsenal Foundation is proud to support other initiatives that are helping to transform the lives of young people overseas.
In the summer of 2013, The Arsenal Foundation teamed up with Grassroot Soccer (GRS), a registered charity that uses the power of football to educate and inspire young people to live healthy, more productive lives.
Founded in 2002, the driving force behind the organisation is to use the power of football to train African coaches, teachers and peer educators to deliver an interactive HIV prevention and life skills curriculum to young girls and boys.
Thanks to a donation of £10,000, the Foundation has enabled GRS to deliver football camps for 400 young people in the Bulawayo townships of Zimbabwe – a country with a large and passionate Arsenal following, but which has been severely impacted by the devastating effects of HIV/AIDS.
During the camps, the youngsters receive soccer coaching and like skills education, followed by the chance to watch an Arsenal match and listen to messages from first team players that aim to motivate and inspire.
Arsenal Foundation Ambassador, Robert Pires, and Gunners defender Bacary Sagna have both pledged their support to GRS. Speaking about the programme, Pires said:
For me, soccer has always been a way I can express myself. Grassroot Soccer uses the language and beauty of the game to break down barriers, build trust, and educate young people to adopt healthy behaviours. Soccer becomes part of the solution.Robert Pires