The New England Mutiny are proud to announce that they will once again team up with women's soccer pioneer Kalekeni Banda and his Banda Bola Sports Foundation. On Saturday, June 7th vs. Boston Breakers Academy (7:00 PM kickoff), the team will collect school & sports supplies for the Chituka Village Project located in Nkhata Bay South District, Northern Malawi, Central Africa. The full list of needed items can be found below.
Fans can drop off donations at our ticket booth the night of the match and enter to win a grand prize. The Banda Bola Sports Foundation is dedicated to transforming the lives of rural poor children of Chituka Village and surrounding area schools, offering after-school sports activities & school supplies. This project effects change in these areas by working to provide resources to the children of Malawi.
UPDATE: The U.S. Soccer Federation has donated two (2) tickets to the U.S. Women's National Team match vs. France on Thursday, June 19th to use as the grand prize for the winner of the BBSF fundraiser.
Partnering again with a regionally-based charity organization with ties across the Atlantic Ocean formed by a local coaching legend (Banda led the UMass Minutewomen to six consecutive NCAA appearances in the 1980's, including five trips to the Final Four) was an easy decision for the Mutiny organization.
"Last year was a success, so we're hoping this year we can do even better for Coach Banda," said Team Owner Joe Ferrara, Jr., whose team has worked with organizations like Rays Of Hope, a breast cancer awareness initiative, in the past. "The Mutiny looks to partner with local charities, but those who also have a wider scope to their cause. I know our Mutiny fans, who've been so generous in the past for our fundraisers, will really help out again with this great cause."
Children in Malawi face many adversities including extreme poverty, famine, drought, and diseases such as cholera, malaria, HIV-AIDS. While primary and middle schools exist, many of these schools lack the basic supplies and resources such as pencils, pens, notebooks and textbooks. Moreover, education is not mandated so many children do not have the opportunity to become engaged scholastically.
Last year, Banda delivered a shipping container full of donations to the children of Malawi. This year, the Mutiny & BBSF hope to better last year's golden goal.
"Women's soccer gave me my first opportunity to coach at University of Massachusetts," said Banda, who was inducted into the UMass Hall Of Fame in 1999. "Every time I am associated with an organization that promotes the game like the New England Mutiny, it goes a long way to support our cause and improve the lives of the girls in Chituka Village."
For more information on Coach Banda, the BBSF & The Chituka Village Project, please visit their official website at http://www.bandabolasportsfoundation.org. You can also contact him by phone at (518) 364-2842 or e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. The full list of needed items is provided here:
School Supplies: pens, pencils, crayons, notebooks, pads, coloring books, books, dictionaries, flash cards, games, tape, rulers, compass, calculators, sharpeners.
Sports Equipment: balls (all sports), sneakers, sport shoes, uniforms, whistles, stop watches, training equipment, manuals, rule books, socks.
Health Items: first aid supplies, isopropyl alcohol, hydrogen peroxide, toiletry items, toilet paper, feminine hygiene, OTC medicines.
Miscellaneous: trash bags, plastic storage bags, warm-weather clothes, flip-flops, sandals, umbrellas, flashlights, reading glasses.
The Mutiny travel to face New Hampshire tonight before returning home to East Longmeadow High School on Saturday, May 31st to face the Boston Breakers Reserves (7:00 PM kickoff). The fundraiser for the Banda Bola Sports Foundation will occur on Saturday, June 7th. Tickets for all Mutiny home matches are available on the "Schedule" page of their official website.