Promotion for Local Youth Football Team
But Bollo United seeks sponsorship for next season
Huey Reid, Coach for Bollo United, is justifiably proud of his team's performance in the Hayes and District Sunday Youth Football. His Under 12 team have been promoted from Division 1 to the Premiership and next season will be playing boys 2 years older than them.
The Bollo United teams are made up entirely by children living in Acton, mainly on the South Acton estate. Each team is completely multi-national, "a real league of nations. Playing sport like this," Huey says, "gets the players to build up friendships and allegiances with children from many different cultures and religions. Not only that, but the parents on the touchline get to know one another, too. I can't think of any better ways of encouraging positive community spirit."
During the last season, Bollo United scored a fantastic 35 goals and have already scored 23 in 2008. Their top goal scorer is Kaniska Nazari, 14 who attends Acton High. Tahir Darr, 14, is the playmaker and controls the mid-field. He attends Greenford High. Huey tells me proudly: "We have been 1st, 2nd or 3rd in the League all season despite the fact that the Under 13 team are playing in the Under 15 Division 1."
However, running a football team like this does not come cheap. Match cards have to be purchased for each player, insurance has to be paid, plus travelling expenses for away matches and ground hire for practises and local games, and football shirts. All this comes to £6-7,000 every year.
For the past three years, Higgins Construction, - who were working on the South Acton Estate - sponsored the team which, Huey says, was "a huge help. And Acton Community Forum gives us lots of support. They help us to raise funds through grants etc."
Now, new contractors have moved in and - despite much-appreciated help from local high street hairdressing business D&A Barber Shop, there is still a huge shortfall.
As Huey says: "Funding is crucial to the teams. We are really hoping to find sponsors for next season. We are so proud of the team's achievement in getting promoted. We are also very proud of the fact that the team is responsible for promoting a huge amount of goodwill amongst the very diverse ethnic groups of young people living on the South Acton Estate."
On July 26th the team will participate in the Justin Hudson Cup where coaches and youth players join forces for a day of football and fun in Acton Park. The cup is in memory of Justin Hudson who died in his early 30's. The proceeds kick off at 11:00am and finish at 5:30pm. There will be a bouncy castle, food, music and a sponsored walk. All proceeds go to Cancer Research. Huey says: "It's the least we can do. Justin was one of the good guys."
If anyone is interested in promoting the team, or would like to help, Huey can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or on 07788635832.
September 11, 2008