After a noisey and dramatic night of football at the Lonier Soccer City yesterday, the 2014 Street Child World Cup group stages have finished, and we know our quarter finalists.
In the girls competition Brazil girls, organised by Favela Street, which uses football as a social tool to create better opportunities for children growing up with social violence, will face Nicaragua, organised by Casa Alianza Nicaragua, who help around 5,000 children a year.
Mozambique, organised by Meninos da Mocambique, which started as a project offering medical services but has expanded to include educational and vocational training for street children, are playing South Africa, organised by Umthombo, whose focus is the rehabilitation and empowerment of street children.
Philippines, organised by Fairplay for All, who are campaigning for manufacturers to put mustard in glue to make it unpalatable drug for children will play England, who come from Islington Council’s Independent Futures service and the New Horizon Youth Centre.
Finally Zimbabwe, organised by Grassroots Soccer which uses football to mobilise and educate individuals and communities about HIV awareness and prevention will play El Salvador, organised by Toybox, who work in a region considered to be the world’s most dangerous to be a woman.
In the boys’ competition Indonesia, organised by several NGOs under a banner campaign called Garuda Baru sending the message that street-connected children need opportunities, not just money will face Tanzania, organised by TSC Sports Academy, which uses sport as a tool to get children back into education.
Burundi, organised by New Generation, which is fostering relations between boys from different ethnic background in country scarred by civil war, will play Liberia, organised by Street Child, which aims to help out-of-school children find a stable living situation and get them back into education.
Pakistan, organised by the Azad Foundation, which plays a leading role in influencing policy on street children in the country, face Philippines, also orgnaised by Fairplay for All.
Finally Brazil, organised by O Pequeno Nazareno, which is leading a nationwide campaign calling for the country’s first ever public policy on street children will take on USA, organised by Street Soccer USA, which hs developed a detailed curriculum to boost the mental and physical wellbeing of homeless young people.
“It was a privilege to be invited to the launch of the Street Child World Cup at Downing Street. It gives children a voice through football, sales a platform to express their rights and celebrate their abilities – I’m proud to add my support.”
“No child should have to live on the streets. I commend the Street Child World Cup for providing a platform for the rights of street children to be heard.”
“When ever people come across me they laugh. It seems like my mouth is zipped because they talk for us. I wish they could give us a chance to talk for ourselves.”