The team will take the kits donated at each of Hampshire FA’s hub sites in the county (Stoneham Lane Football Complex, Front Lawn Community Hub, and Winklebury Football Complex) and transport them to RAF Shawbury, in Shropshire, where Wing Commander Neil Hope operates and coordinates the RAF backed ‘Taking Football to Africa and Beyond’ charitable appeal.
Discussing the involvement of RAF Odiham with Hampshire FA, Flt Lt Ash Steele says:
“After a fantastic season of success on the pitch, it is pleasing to see the team come together again for such a great cause. The team spirit fostered through the year is now spilling over into other areas and as OIC football, I’m incredibly proud of the time and effort the squad are putting into this charity effort together with Hampshire FA. RAF Odiham FC is proud of our relationship with Hampshire FA in supporting this appeal and hopefully we can continue to support this very worthwhile project in the coming years.”
The Taking Football to Africa and Beyond charitable appeal has been in operation for over 15 years, originally organised by Wing Commander Neil Hope MBE in late May 2006. The appeal operates from RAF Shawbury, in North Shropshire, through the RAF Football Association, providing aid to impoverished areas of the world through donated items.
Since its inception, the appeal has been a great success, delivering over 353,000 items, including more than 101,000 football shirts to 63 countries worldwide! This is largely thanks to the tremendous generosity of the appeal’s many donors over the years, who have improved the lives of so many less fortunate people across the globe in North America, South America, Europe, Africa, and Asia.
Items have reached small African villages as well as the huge ‘Slum’ towns of Kenya, South Africa, and Nigeria, as well as to mountain villages in the Peruvian Andes, refugee camps on the Syria/Turkey border, war torn Afghanistan and Iraq, diverse areas in Pakistan, India and across the Middle East and Southeast Asia. More recently, the appeal has also managed to deliver items to war-struck Ukraine. The items have assisted people across all genders, faiths and beliefs portraying the truly diverse and inclusive reach of football and its ability to bring people together.
The appeal has been fortunate in having a huge number of donors, from individuals to clubs throughout the grassroots landscape, right up to elite organisations such as Premier League clubs and the FA. Once again, you have a chance to join the appeal’s army of fabulous donors…
Hampshire FA first supported the appeal in 2014 and has continued its support ever since. This month we once again open our doors to the grassroots football community and urge you to support the appeal by donating your unwanted football boots and kit. Information on how to donate can be found below:
HOW TO DONATE:
Hampshire FA is accepting donations of any unwanted kit to support RAF Shawbury’s, ‘Taking Football to Africa and Beyond’ charitable appeal, from 26th June – 5th July 2023.
All Hampshire FA Hub Sites (listed below) will be open and accepting donations of unwanted football boots and kit from 26th June – 5th July 2023. As a minimum, all sites will be open from 8:30AM - 5:15PM (sites may also be open during evening hours, please contact the hub site via the contact details on the links below to confirm specific opening hours).
Address: Winklebury Football Complex, Winklebury Way, Basingstoke, Hampshire, RG23 8BF
Address: Stoneham Lane Football Complex, Stoneham Lane, Eastleigh, Hampshire, SO16 2PA
Address: Front Lawn Community Hub, Somborne Drive, Portsmouth, Hampshire, PO9 5AN
Please drop in at any point within this window with any kit that you can spare for this fantastic cause. We are particularly keen to collect:
- Playing or training clothing items
- Football boots or trainers
The small gesture of passing on your unwanted items can make a huge difference for so many less fortunate people across the globe.
While we appreciate that kit will be in a used condition, we kindly ask that you please check the condition of all kit before donating to ensure that it is still in a good, useable condition. It would also be incredibly useful for the Hampshire FA and RAF FA teams if you could sort items into bags, labelled with the contents, club/donor name, and details.
Thank you in advance for your support. This is greatly appreciated by all at Hampshire FA and RAF FA, as well as the hundreds of thousands of grateful recipients of your items across the world.
For more information, please email Communications@HampshireFA.com