Hiking up to the mountain village of Magandu can be grueling. The hot Haitian sun and nearly vertical climb are unrelenting, and it takes hours to get there. Never mind that school children are skipping past you effortlessly, long since conditioned to the climb. When you reach the top, there is no electricity or running water. Few basic services are available, and most families survive on subsistence farming.
Of all the places where sport can brighten children’s lives, this is one of the most in need. Daily life, community leadership, and long-term development are all undermined by lack of basic resources and support. Communities such as this are why GOALS exists.
GOALS’ mission is to use soccer to engage children in community service and education to improve their quality of life today and develop new leadership for tomorrow. GOALS works with more than 600 children per month and seeks to partner with communities in under-served rural areas. Programs include local teams, summer camp, and community events. In a community like Magandu, coming together around sport is a natural way to begin collaborating on development projects from the ground up.
When you reach Magandu, far up the mountains, it is the perfect place to find One World Futbols. The ground is rocky, the field sloping steeply, and children never let the balls come to a stop. “Regular” soccer balls wouldn’t last an hour here. The One World Futbols that GOALS distributed over 15 months ago are still going strong.