On Saturday 22nd June 2019, the British High Commission in Freetown in partnership with the Ministries of Sport and Education, and UNICEF Sierra Leone hosted the first soccer aid gala match in Freetown.
The matches took place in celebration of the Soccer Aid appeal, which is raising funds to help children in Sierra Leone have a better start in life. The UK government is matching donations to the appeal made before 23 July up to £3 million.
UKaid and UNICEF will use these funds to help improve the health of mothers, newborn babies, and children under 5 in Sierra Leone. This will support projects such as: training midwives to help mothers deliver babies safely; treating malnutrition in critically ill children; and training pre-school teachers so children can learn and thrive in their key early years.
Addressing the spectators and players, the British High Commissioner to Sierra Leone, Guy Warrington, said:
‘It’s fantastic to be here with these young players to celebrate the power of sport to bring people together. I’m delighted we can celebrate the Soccer Aid appeal, which is defending play for every child, by playing our own matches here in Freetown. Through this appeal Sierra Leone will receive vital funds raised by the UK public, and matched by the UK government to double the difference made to children’s lives.’
The recent Soccer Aid match played in London is the world’s biggest celebrity football match and saw footballing legends lining up against world-famous names at Chelsea Football Club’s Stamford Bridge stadium. Didier Drogba, Michael Essien, and Usain Bolt called on the UK public to give generously, to help more children in Sierra Leone have a childhood full of play.
The Matches was played between the Skye Rangers Football Foundation and the Bilbao Foundation for the Boys team, And the Potter United with Mahmoud FC for the girl’s team. Bilbao Foundation and Mahmoud FC eventually emerged triumphant.FrontPage4072019.