The Nartey Sports Foundation Collaborates with El Segundo Middle Schoolers to Supply Soccer Equipment to Ghanaian Children.
One of the founding themes of the Nartey Sports Foundation is: “With vision and passion, anyone can make a difference.”
This theme was aptly illustrated in March 2019, when the Nartey Sports Foundation developed an informal partnership with three middle school boys from El Segundo, California.
Jackson Bevelheimer, Kieran DiCerbo, and Mohammed Hashalh began a community service project as part of their course requirements for an 8th grade class at El Segundo Middle School.
All three boys are competitive club soccer players: Jackson and Mohammed are midfielders, and Kieran plays right back. Through their own years of experience in local soccer leagues, the boys realized how much lightly-used soccer equipment is generated each season.
“Soccer jerseys and cleats that are still in good condition usually do not get reused after just one season and often sit in storage in people’s homes,” the boys explained.
Jackson, Kieran, and Mohammed had the idea to collect used soccer shoes and donate them to youth athletes in underserved communities. The boys later thought to also collect soccer jerseys and shorts.
Over several months, the boys collected items from their neighbors, going door-to-door and using social media platforms for the donation drive. Ultimately, they collected approximately 65 pairs of soccer shoes and 55 jerseys from South Bay communities between Hawthorne and Playa del Rey.
Co-founder and Executive Director of The Nartey Sports Foundation, Mimi Nartey, is impressed and inspired by the efforts of the youth in her community.
“Through the partnerships we are forming with youth sports non-profits, I am very fortunate to meet all different types of people making a difference in the lives of children all over the world,” says Mimi. “But these boys may be the most inspiring leaders of all - because they are so young, but they have a global sense of purpose well beyond their years.”
“This is a great example of the power of taking action,” adds Co-Founder Kofi Nartey. “Even the smallest efforts can lead to meaningful impact.”
The Nartey Sports Foundation is taking responsibility for the transportation and delivery of this equipment to Kumasi, Ghana, where the shoes and jerseys will be given to primary and secondary school children.
Mimi Nartey played for the Ghanaian National Soccer Team for seven years and has a deeply personal understanding of the potential impact of this donation.
“Often, the best athletes are people who come from the most disadvantaged circumstances because they usually don’t have other options for their lives,” Mimi explains. “I sincerely believe that something as simple as a used pair of soccer shoes will be a tremendous resource to support the development of a great Ghanian athlete and change lives.”
Youth Athletes Helping Other Youth Athletes
El Segudo 8th graders, Jackson, Kieran, and Mohammed collected soccer equipment that The Nartey Sports Foundation will deliver to youth athletes in Kumasi, Ghana.