Cudicini, who was joined on the trip by Simon Taylor, head of the Chelsea Foundation, was given a wonderful reception by residents in Timber Nkwanta, a remote farming village which is located two hours outside the capital Accra. The hosts handed over a banana plant as a welcome gift before our former goalkeeper watched a lively match between local youngsters.
Once the match had come to a conclusion, the Italian rolled back the years and stood in goal as those children involved in the game took turns to try and beat him from the penalty spot.
Speaking after the event, Cudicini, who visited Ghana as part of a trip organised by Premier League sponsors Barclays, said: ‘It’s great to have seen first-hand the work of Chelsea’s new global charity partner Plan International here in Ghana.
‘Meeting some of the children and young people who benefit from Plan’s work has been fantastic. I know everyone at Chelsea is excited to be supporting innovative projects like this one.’
Plan International has been working in this part of Ghana since 2011 as part of their child sponsorship programme, where supporters donate regularly to sponsor a child, with the funds benefitting the whole community.
In Timber Nkwanta, Plan has built water pumps, supports village savings and loans groups, provides school supplies and is currently refurbishing a school building where the match took place.
Working together, Chelsea and Plan will harness the unique appeal of football and huge popularity of the Blues in order to motivate and inspire young people across the world.
‘What’s particularly inspiring is to see the reach and power of football to transform lives,’ Cudicini added. ‘Through football, we can spread messages of equality, respect and tolerance. That’s what this winning partnership with Plan is about.’
Date | 2nd December, 2015
Source: Chelsea FC