This past month international soccer icon and established humanitarian Pelé announced the launch of The Pelé Foundation, his new global charitable foundation focused on empowering children in impoverished areas around the world. In its first year, the Foundation aims to fulfill its mission by partnering with Pencils of Promise and charity: water.
The Pelé Foundation will fund the two organizations’ programs dedicated to providing aid for children in poverty and increasing access to an education. The Foundation will provide Pencils of Promise with monetary support intended to improve reading fluency and comprehension in Guatemala. charity: water will be working with the Foundation to provide children in developing countries with access to clean water, reducing the amount of time that the children spend walking and waiting to collect and bring water to their families each day.
Pelé is no stranger to sport philanthropy as he is known not only for his incredible abilities as a footballer but for breaking down social barriers through charity as well. His altruism focuses mostly on organizations that support children, such Unicef and Great Ormond Street Hospital.
Even into retirement, Pelé uses his status as one of the best and most popular soccer players of all time to continually bring hope to kids in underprivileged regions of the world, areas he knows all too well as he grew up in similar conditions as a young boy. Pelé’s empathy for children in poverty drives his zealous involvement in youth empowerment and education.
ESPN dedicates a multi-functional sports court in Mexico for its community residents.
Civic leaders, ESPN, and Disney employees gathered in Transportistas in Chimalhuacan to celebrate the opening of a new court space built for he community. According to Beyond Sport, the project is led by ESPN, along with love.futbol and A Ganar. The hope is that the space will be used for people to learn job skills and fulfill their potential through the power of sports. Beyond Sport said, “The program was developed by award-winning organization A Ganar, which uses sports as a vehicle to provide communities across Latin America with training and skills that lead to employment and enables young people to achieve success in life. The court space was enhanced by a KaBOOM! playground built to inspire kids to get up, get outside and get active.”
Chimalhuacan was carefully selected based on need, population and social issues. This court will help create a safe space and will greatly enhance the sports opportunities in the area for children. Located in a neighborhood known for violence, this is one of the only safe spaces nearby. “ESPN is committed to providing resources to kids in Mexico City to play sports,” said Russell Wolff, executive vice president and managing director, ESPN International. “We are pleased to collaborate with love.fútbol, A Ganar, KaBOOM!, Deportivo Don Bosco and Street Soccer Mexico to build this court and playground in a community where there is a need, as it can truly make a difference.” This is a long-term community initiative that should provide positive opportunities for children and keep children safe. As a result, these community members will grow up with positive opportunities to engage in sports rather than succumb to potential violence.
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