Smiles are possible thanks to you!
The main objective of playing football in a shantytown is not scoring a goal, but preventing the ball from ending in no-man-land where everyone fears fetching it.
José was five and like every afternoon, he was playing football with friends. An old man walked by the pitch and before reaching the corner they all knew what was going to happen –as if it wasn’t the first time it occurred. The old man is intercepted by a stranger and killed. Another life he witnessed gone. By the age of twelve, José already knew how to steal cars, was doing drugs – the same ones that had left blind or overdosed many of his friends- and was at the bullseye of a gang. Fearing for his life, he arrived to Cazuca and was walking in idleness and drugs when someone told him about Tiempo de Juego. He attended his first training with broken shoes, old pants and a t-shirt few sizes smaller than his.
Today at age 24, and after 10 years of growing with TDJ, José has been teaching 90 kids daily that football is by far a better option than crime, that values are the most important thing to treasure in life, and that their dreams can in fact come true. Today, he is in Spain living his dream and finishing his studies on Sports and Recreation.
These and many stories are the ones that inspire Tiempo de Juego to continue its efforts to provide better futures for more than 1230 kids and adolescentes in Colombia. And its the same story that has inspired the judges from Beyond Sport to select us as one of the 5 finalists for the "Sport for Social Inclusion Award". Being a shortlister will help our community efforts grow, thrive, and increase its already amazing ability to create positive impact in the communities we work in Colombia.
Being shortlisted, or even being able to attend so many kids, wouldn't be possible to the continuous effort of organizations and individual donors who believe in the cause. Thank you for making the dreams of many children in Colombia come true. Wether we win the prize or not, we wake up each day knowing that what we do is beneffiting those who need it the most and that sports and culture can indeed change the future.
Read more about the award here: http://www.beyondsport.org/Awards