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Unified Football in Ouagadougou

We are scheduled to play in a Unified Football tournament today. As ever in West Africa, the fearsome heat makes us anxious about taking part. But these events are such fun that it is impossible to stay on the sidelines. So bring on the football, bring on the sweat!

Kids sitting by the Special Olympics bannerKids sitting by the Special Olympics banner

Special Olympics athletes are joined by DHL staff and members of the Burkina Faso Football Association including its president and members of the national Burkina Faso Under-17 team, who have competed at the recent Under-17 World Cup in Nigeria.

A stand shelters spectators from the sunA stand shelters spectators from the sun

Being a Liverpool fan, Andrew is very keen to play on the team that is dressed in the Liverpool kit.

The Liverpool teamThe Liverpool team

An open and friendly atmosphere develops as everyone gets to know one another. All the teams play against each other and once more football is the winner.

A game kicks offA game kicks off
Games are played at paceGames are played at pace

Some of the Special Olympics athletes who are playing have quite severe disabilities, but they are accepted as players of equal importance to each team.

A child is delighted to hold The BallA child is delighted to hold The Ball

The large crowd of spectators (we estimate around 500 people have turned up) seem to enjoy the games a lot and are very vocal in their support. The post-football celebrations show that making new friendships means that, whatever happens on the pitch, everyone is a winner off the pitch.

Everyone celebrates friendship and footballEveryone celebrates friendship and football

Written by on Sunday, April 11th, 2010

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The Ball 2018 left England on 25th March 2018 and travelled to the World Cup in Russia.

The Ball 2014 kicked off from England on 9th Jan 2014 and headed to the World Cup in Brazil.

The Ball 2010 left England on 24th Jan 2010 headed to the Opening Ceremony in Johannesburg, South Africa.

The Ball 2006 travelled from London to the Opening Ceremony in Munich, Germany.

The Ball 2002 was carried 7000 miles across Europe and Asia to the World Cup finals in Korea & Japan.