The appeal, organised by RAF commander Neil Hope MBE, collects donated football kits and redistributes it across the globe to less fortunate parts of the world.
Ruiru Sportif were one of many clubs (pictured below) who were recipients of donated kit in one of the appeal’s 19 deliveries in 2020, which saw over 19,000 items of kit delivered to children and adults in The Gambia, Ghana, Egypt, Sierra Leone, Zambia, Nepal and Zimbabwe.
Since it’s inception in 2006, the appeal has seen 265,000 items, including 78,000 football shirts, delivered to people in 58 countries worldwide.
In 2020, kits were donated by clubs across the United Kingdom including Manchester United, Leicester City, Brighton and Hove Albion, Aston Villa and QPR, in addition to large donations from The FA, other grassroots football clubs, and County FAs, including the Derbyshire FA and dozens of clubs across the county.
Mr Hope said: “The appeal, which began at RAF Shropshire back in 2006, has recently passed the incredible milestone of delivering its quarter millionth item of football kit in a delivery destined for Kenya.
“It has been a difficult year due to the global COVID pandemic but this has made our deliveries more important than ever for those living on the breadline in the slum towns of Africa and beyond.
“Whilst many schools and clubs utilise the equipment, they are also able to use the surplus kit to swap or sell for food and essentials. It is down to the fabulous donations that we are able to provide this essential aid.
“I am amazed the appeal, born out of a tipsy conversation in a bar, is still running 14 years later. It has reached adults and young people across the globe delivering aid through the worldwide reach of football.
“I have been shocked by the support given by a huge amount of people across the UK in donating kit. The appeal continues to be a huge success and will continue for as long as we can let it. When you see the massive positive effect it has in the slums and villages in Africa and the mountain villages of Nepal, as well as other places, you realise the impact football can have.”
To find out more about 'Taking Football To Africa and Beyond', click here.