Homeless World Cup 2007 to Copenhagen
09.05.2006By Kirsten Sparre
The idea behind the Homeless World Cup is provide players with sense of belonging and an opportunity to regain their health and self esteem. It works. According to Homeless World Cup’s own press release, over 77 per cent of players change their lives forever by participating.
”They move forwards to find regular employment, come off drugs and alcohol, pursue education, improve their housing, and even play for semi-professional and professional football clubs,” the statement reads.
The tournament in Denmark will take place in the capital Copenhagen and a big stadium will be erected on the square directly in front of the City Hall. This will help the Homeless World Cup in achieving another aim - namely that of changing the attitude of the public towards homeless people who are suddenly cast in the role of heroes.
Denmark fought off Germany, Italy and Poland for the cup, and the success can be ascribed to the fact that street football for the homeless is well established in Denmark which has already hosted three national championships. Also, the Homeless World Cup receives considerable financial support from the Danish Ministry of Social Affairs and the City of Copenhagen.
The Homeless World Cup has previously been held in Austria 2003, Sweden 2004 and Edinburgh 2005. This year’s event will take place in Cape Town, South Africa, in the last week of September.
Statistics about success
More than 90 per cent said it had a positive impact on their lives
74 per cent made significant changes in their lives
38 per cent found regular employment
46 per cent improved their housing situation
34 per cent have pursued education
27 per cent have addressed their drug dependency
72 per cent continue to play football after Homeless World Cup
16 players have been signed professionally or semi-professionally in a playing or coaching capacity by football clubs.