Monthly Archives

May 2013

The Charity Ball Classic

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A few weeks back Jack Andrews hosted a soccer tournament in Iowa to support Charity Ball. He and his team played in the tourney and sported some Charity Ball Tees to raise awareness. I asked him to write up a quick overview of the event. Here’s what Jack had to say…

My name is Jack Andrews; I am from England and currently play soccer and go to school at AIB College of Business in Des Moines, Iowa. I am always trying to find ways to give back through soccer. When I found Charity Ball, I knew I could help in someway.

On April 27, I organized a small indoor soccer tournament in the name of Charity Ball to raise awareness for what a great job Ethan is doing as well as his family and friends. We had 6 teams from around Iowa competing in the tourney. There were 2 groups of 3, the winners of each group went to a final and the winner was crowned.

It was a great event and by providing T-shirts, flyers and stickers to the participants, I feel we raised great awareness for the kids who need it the most. A big thanks goes out to Carlos Acebey who is the Coach of Waukee Soccer Club in Iowa for getting the location sorted out, Lexy Rees (Utah) and Emma Barber (Iowa) for the tournament photos and organization. I would also like to thank Marc Hill, Jacob Richards, Nicky Poulter, Scott Jumeaux and Darren Marcelo for representing Charity Ball.

Jack, thanks for helping support Charity Ball and raising more awareness for kids around the world who are unable to play the beautiful game with a real, quality soccer ball.

If you would like to host a Charity Ball tournament in your community, drop us an email or tweet and we’ll help you get it organized.

Making it More Beautiful: Guatemala

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Lindsay Weber spent some time in Guatemala this past February. Thanks to Brian Dunseth, Ben Hooper & Co, she first came across Charity Ball through a post on the The Original Winger. I’ll let her share the rest of the story…

In February 2013 I set out for my fourth annual trip to Guatemala. I travel with a team that is part medical, part construction. The year prior I had played soccer every day on our site with two little boys, brothers. I noticed over the years that most kids play with makeshift balls, either old and deflated or made of thin plastic and the size of a grapefruit. That year I spent $10 to get the two boys a real leather ball from a nearby market. The gift to them was such a prized possession that they went to hide their ball in a safe place instead of playing with it! When I returned home I looked into bringing more balls with me the next time and that is how I came across Charity Ball.

I ended up making space for 10 balls in my personal luggage. I tagged along with the construction crew on the day they were visiting a 4 classroom school in a rural village. We traveled up a winding dirt road to be met by jubilant children dressed in the traditional Mayan clothing. We installed stoves and water filters, played soccer and basketball with the minimal equipment they had, and enjoyed a dance performance they put on.

We finished the day with my presentation and I had kept the balls in a large black bag to keep it a surprise. By the time I pulled out the first ball I was completely swarmed. I felt like Santa at Christmas! The kids were all smiles and laughter and pickup games broke out in the courtyard right away. I included a pump and extra needles for maintenance and the teachers of the school expressed their gratitude. When we left, the kids rang alongside our bus and waved us off all the way out of the gate.

This kind of experience is just as rewarding when you’re on the giving end as it is for those receiving a gift. The country of Guatemala is so incredibly poor and yet the people are so resilient. Something as simple as a ball really can spread joy. It truly is the beautiful game, in more ways than one.

Lindsay, way to go. Thanks for sharing the beautiful game with others. Let us know when you’re going back and well set you up with some more balls.


FC Barcelona Camp: Youth Soccer

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I’ve got huge respect for Barcelona FC. As a matter of fact, my room back at my old house was actually themed out in Barcelona colors. You can imagine how excited I was when the guys who represent their youth camp reached out to us. As a matter of fact, the official Barcelona Camp is now an official sponsor of Charity Ball and the Play [well] Cup Tournament in Mozambique. I got with the guys recently and asked if they would be willing to drop a guest post on the Charity Ball Blog. Here’s what they put together…

When we heard about Ethan’s commitment to giving kids around the world the chance to play soccer, we knew we needed to get involved. We are the Official FC Barcelona Soccer Camp, and we love soccer and what it does for kids — not only athletically, but in terms of understanding what it means to be a member of a team, learning to compete hard but fairly, and being able to have fun while working towards a goal. We grew up with a soccer ball our feet, and Ethan’s dedication to giving that opportunity to as many less-fortunate children as possible is inspiring. We see some incredible players come through our camps, but what I find amazing is that the best players come from many different backgrounds — rich and poor, from every corner of the world. By giving the opportunity to play with a real soccer ball to as many people as possible, Ethan is an example to all of us who want to see the game we love grow, as well as those of us who grew up with a ball at our feet.

If you looking for a specialized soccer camp to take your skills to the next level, be sure to check out the website.

Més que un club!