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Sports equipment for African Children Appeal 27 June 2007

The residents of the Isle of Man have packed a 40 foot lorry full of donated sports equipment for children in Africa.

The generous donations were made after the Department of Tourism and Leisure launched their ‘Sports Equipment for African Children Appeal’ on the 15th January 2007. The appeal called for Isle of Man residents to donate both used and new sports equipment to the worthy cause.

The equipment was collected by the Zambian High Commissioner, His Excellency Mr Anderson Chibwa during a visit to the Island on 15th June. Items donated include sports rackets, footballs, basketballs, rugby balls, hockey sticks, and sports kits.

The appeal was co-ordinated by the NSC Project co-ordinator Carl Glover. He explained:

‘I am so proud of the generosity that has been shown by the people of the Isle of Man. At first, our aim of filling a 40 foot lorry seemed like a very daunting task, but I am incredibly pleased that we have achieved our goal and the equipment is now on its way to Zambia with His Excellency.’

Initially, the equipment will be given to the organisation ‘Sport in Action Zambia’ who will sort through and distribute the donations. The equipment will be given mainly to children living in extreme poverty in remote rural villages as well as local schools. It will be distributed according to the needs of specific regions where structured sports programmes are taking place or being developed.

During his visit to the Island, His Excellency Mr Anderson Chibwa explained how Zambia is using sport to tackle many of the social issues facing the country, particularly Aids and the HIV virus. He also commented on how much the generosity of our residents will help enrich the lives of children in Zambia.

Department of Tourism and Leisure Minister Adrian Earnshaw said:

‘This has been a fantastic project which I know Manx people have taken to their hearts. Many will share in my disbelief that some children in Zambia have never even seen sports equipment. It is incredible to think that the odd item lying around the house will enhance and enrich the lives of children living in conditions from which, fortunately, the majority of us in the Western world are exempt.’

The Department of Tourism and Leisure would like to thank the National Association of Youth Sports, G4S Security Services (Isle of Man) Ltd, DHL, Isle of Man Steam Packet Company, Charles Turner- Intersport, Pulse Fitness, Manx Petroleums, Total Isle of Man Ltd and Kallkwik for supporting the project.

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