A desperate and largely unknown humanitarian crisis is deteriorating in the Lake Chad Basin region of West Africa, forcing millions of people to flee their homes and leaving millions more in need of humanitarian assistance. Oxfam is providing life-saving support but help is urgently needed to prevent the crisis turning into a catastrophe.
I love football. I also love working for Oxfam. They’re two of my major passions in life and I can be quite geeky about them. Although being able to name Everton’s championship winning side of the 80’s means I’m a bit more of a football geek. Football (or soccer, for you USA fans) connects people all around the world but there just isn’t that much opportunity to use it in my work.
However, this summer there’s a World Cup – a global football festival that will grab the world’s attention. It will generate passion and enthusiasm on a huge scale. As well ensuring a big focus on Africa.
We wanted to turn all of that into something genuinely world changing. We wanted to connect with football fans and Oxfam supporters around the world and give them the chance to express themselves in a meaningful way. So, we decided to set up a massive game of keepy-uppy and to tell our leaders ‘Don’t Drop the Ball on Aid’.
Grab a football and a camera and film yourself keeping the ball up. Whether you can do one, two or twenty, your keepy-uppys will form part of an amazing video chain, linking people worldwide who care enough to kick off and fight poverty.
You don’t have to be this good but take a look at our video:
We’ll show your videos to world leaders at the UN’s Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) conference in New York in September. The MDGs have the power to revolutionise people’s lives in poor countries. Indeed 10 years ago, world leaders signed up to these 8 MDGs, which commit to halving the number of people living in extreme poverty by 2015. But rich countries are failing to provide vitally-needed aid money to turn the goals into reality, and this conference – combined with your keepy-uppys – can kickstart vital progress.
So grab a ball and get yourself filmed. A lot of very powerful people will get a timely reminder to keep their promises on delivering aid money – as well as getting a chance to check out your beautiful ball skills.
And if you want to see why I work for Oxfam as opposed to playing for Everton, have a look at my skills.