Cheslea's DECO attends ABC Trust’s Football Tournament

Portuguese star presents the winners with their trophy and prizes

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ABC, a charity supporting Brazilian street kids, decided to hold a fund raiser at Rocks Lane Multi-Sport Centre on Saturday afternoon, 8 May. 10 teams signed on to take part in a 5-a-side tournament officiated by Rocks Lane referees. Fast and furious games resulted in a hugely competitive and enjoyable day, culminating in a thrilling 6-5 finale, watched by Chelsea super star, Deco. This exciting tense match was followed by a presentation, where an impressed Deco gave the winning team the trophy.

He then generously spent time with children in our playground and attending a Rocks Lane party, which had exciting matches of its own. Rocks Lane's Adam Wilkinson, who oversaw the charity event before then organising the children's party, said:
"I was mighty impressed with Deco's approachability and kindness to the young players who come here. We look forward to many similar events here in Barnes, where everyone has huge fun whilst raising considerable amounts of money for a brilliant charity."

The ten teams came from companies across London and included the Royal Bank of Scotland, finance firm Cantor Fitzgerald, commercial real estate company Jones Long LaSalle and video game producers, EA Sports. All of the teams met on the pristine 5-a-side pitches at Rocks Lane to battle it out for the chance to lift the trophy and at the same time provide invaluable support for a unique campaign that ABC is working on with the aim that that no child need ever sleep on the streets of Brazil again.

The players kept their energy levels up for a straight 3 hours in the league stage and the competition intensified as we drew closer to the semi-finals. With the favourites knocked out in the semi-finals, there was everything to play for as Royal Bank of Scotland and Jones Long LaSalle met in the final match. With Deco’s arrival just before the final match commenced, the excitement hit a new high both on and off the pitch. Although Jones Long LaSalle were down 6-0 at first in the final, they fought back in style, but not quite enough to win it as the final score was 7-5 to Royal Bank of Scotland.

Deco & Organisers at Rocks Lane Multi Sport Centre
(photo: Agnieszka Luczak.)

The players were all rewarded for their efforts at a post-tournament reception where the teams toasted the winners and applauded Deco (even the non-Chelsea fans!).
Before the presentation by Deco of the prestigious ABC Corporate Football Tournament 2010 trophy, ABC Trust’s CEO, Andrew Webb, thanked all of the players for their great commitment to the initiative for their invaluable support of the Street Child World Cup.

To take part in this event, all players were asked to raise (through sponsorship) £250 and the total raised so far between the teams has reached over £6000, with more still to come. All the funds raised from the tournament will be used for ABC's involvement in the international football project, Street Child World Cup. ABC Trust worked very closely with Team Brasil throughout the lead-up to and during the first ever Street Child World Cup which took place in South Africa in March this year. The two-week long event saw teams of street children from nine different countries from around the world meet in Durban to compete in their own World Cup tournament and also gave them a chance to share their stories and opinions with children who have faced the harsh reality of life on the streets in their own countries too.

Although the Street Child World Cup 2010 tournament is now over and the teams are all back in their home countries, the work does not end there. ABC will be working with the Brazilian team to develop a four year national campaign aimed at making sure that the voices of street children are heard and changes are made to improve the plight of the vulnerable young people of Brazil before bringing the SCWC project to Brazil in 2014.

ABC will also now be working to provide support to the returning members of the team as they return to shelters and the communities in which they live; these young people have been part of an extraordinary experience and now they return to their lives back home with new hopes and dreams. The Street Child World Cup is a very exciting project for ABC Trust to be involved in and we are now very much looking forward to developing our campaign on the ‘Rights of the Child’ and taking the next steps to making SCWC 2014 another successful event for everyone involved.

May 13, 2010