Bringing Smiles Soccer Cup

Slide GermanyIn September, we pulled off our most ambitious project to date, by hosting a soccer tournament comprising of 25 kids from orphanages, a refugee facility and a special school. The kids were split randomly into one of five teams – with the feature of each team being captained by a professional football player from the German Bundesliga.

The tournament matches were hotly contested and we were treated with a wonderful display of silky soccer moves and good sportsmanship. Our goal was simply to create a special day full of fun and friendship.

At the end of the tournament, we handed each kid a little trophy and a bag of sweets for taking part in the soccer tournament. We then spontaneously organised a match of all the kids against the adults. It was fun and chaotic :). The kids found very creative ways to block the adults from being able to pass to one another (e.g. by jumping on their backs) and went on to win the match!

One of the highlights of the day was the raffle, showing two main prizes and lots of small football memorabilia – at least that was the impression we wanted to create :). The anticipation had been building all day to see who the lucky winner would be. They kids were thrilled to find out that they all got to win a special prize (soccer ball or player’s jersey from one of our professionals) and get them autographed by the professional football players. They were jumping for joy and when home with broad smiles on their faces.

May I join for the next tournament? And may I please keep the Bringing Smiles Team Shirt?

Questions from many of the kids

By all accounts, the afternoon was a great success. The kids enjoyed a beautiful, fun-filled afternoon of soccer, delicious food and being the stars of the day. There were plenty of smiles all round :). We all left the soccer field, in one way or another as winners…

We would like to thank all our helping hands and supporters, please click here to see our “big“ heroes of the day.

Special thanks to our heros for supporting the inaugural BringingSmiles Soccer Cup:

  • To our referees, Leon Schmidt and Younes Bouqoro, who did an excellent job
  • To our tournament manager, Peter Becker-Pennrich, for running a slick operation
  • To our professional football players Gonzalo Castro, Stefan Kießling, Stefan Reinartz, Tranquillo Barnetta & Manuel Friedrich for being such great role models, for sponsoring the soccer prizes and for creating a truly special day for the kids
  • To Nourdin Bouqoro for providing refreshments, little bags full of sweets & friendship bracelets
  • To our doctor on call, Calin Pater
  • To Dirk Vobis, the Chairman of Sparta Bilk Düsseldorf for providing their soccer field and rescheduling their activities around us
  • To all the helping hands, especially Rosi Schmidt, Juliana deMoura, Lutz Schebesta, Petra & Jonas Mede, Simone Becker-Pennrich, and Jan Rickel
  • To Galeria Kaufhof Königsallee for sponsoring an assortment of sweets
  • To Xhabir Recksing, owner of a fruit stand on Carlsplatz, for sponsoring lots of fresh fruits for the kids
  • To the staff from KidS Cologne, Ev. Kinderheim Lievenstraße (Hilden), Jan-Wellem Offene Ganztagsschule, Diakonie Refugee Facility and Ferihan Steiner for coming along with the kids and their great thank you notes after the tournament
  • To all kids as THEY made it a special day for all of us

12. September 2012,
Düsseldorf