M13 Youth Project was chosen to represent the UK as the official 'UK Street Child World Cup football team', in Durban, South Africa, 2010. This was great news for our community of Ardwick and Longsight in Manchester.
But that's not all! CBBC's Blue Peter followed the Team on their journey to South Africa. Blue Peter presenter, Andy Akinwolere, mentored the UK Team, alongside M13 workers and 5 local young coaches.
Blue Peter aired 4 programs following the journey including a half-hour special in South Africa. This program received a great response and was a nominated for BAFTA award 2010 in the area of children's documentary television.
When in South Africa, the UK team met and worked with young people from South Africa, Brazil, Nicaragua, Vietnam, Ukraine, Tanzania, India, and the Philippines. The focus of the trip was of course on the Street Child Football World Cup competition each afternoon, with the finals at the weekend. In the mornings the UK team was hosted by a local school, where they participated in arts workshops that lead to an Art Exhibition at Durban Gallery, they learned about the Rights of the Child, equipping them to participate in the Child Human Rights Conference at the end of their stay, they had the chance to learn about South Africa's history and see a little bit of this amazing country.
Although children in the UK clearly do not face the same issues as those living on the streets in the other participating countries, the UK team went to listen, learn, participate on an equal footing and share their own valuable experiences of life in Ardwick. M13 was invited to provide the team because of our proven track record of working with young people who face significant challenges in UK terms. We have partnered with many young people to help them recognise their own capacities, to speak for themselves and to take action on issues of importance to them. On their return, M13 continued to support the team to speak up for the rights and welfare of children and young people at home and across the world.
The Street Child World Cup is an Amos Trust initiative (UK charity no 292592).
"The Football Association commends initiatives such as the Street Child World Championships which use the power of football to make a difference to people’s lives."
Lord David Triesman: The Football Association