ista has supported an employee’s mercy mission to provide children in central Ghana with sports clothing and equipment.
Sales manager York Dennis, whose family originated in the West African country, traveled with his friend Mike Smart on February 14 for the goodwill trip which was in aid of Sport Relief. York spent £700 of his own money on the trip and had collected plenty of second-hand sportswear, while Mike generously donated boxes of brand new items for the children.
Upon their arrival in the capital Accra, York first had to arrange suitable transportation for his charitable mission. Due to the poor state of the roads, it took more than two hours for York to reach his mother’s home town, Agona Nyakrom, to supply youngsters at the local Anglican church with some much needed football and netball equipment.
Before being introduced to the school children, York had the opportunity to speak to the headmaster, teaching staff and the local priest to explain the purpose on his visit. Understan
dably, everyone associated with the school were elated by the generosity of the gifts.
The community also heard how York had pledged to support the Yaboah family by fundraising for medical treatment to remove an abnormal lump on the face of their youngest son Emmanuel.
A qualified FA coach, York has always had a passion for football having played in London, Hertfordshire and Norfolk. When his playing days came to an end, he became involved in grassroots football with Stoke United FC where York has played an integral role in the success of the club.
“Over the years I’ve developed a wonderful rapport with players, instilling in them the footballing values that were passed down to me,” says York, whose grandfather played for the Ghana national team.
“As well as coaching children from Under-6 to U15, I have also had the chance to coach a senior men’s refugee side which consisted of a number of players from Africa and Afghanistan who had witnessed atrocities in their homeland or had been targeted as suicide bombers.”
Far from being the end of the story, York intends to return to Agona Nyakrom next year to supply similar equipment to a Methodist school. If you have any unwanted football kits, moulded boots/trainers that you wish to donate, please feel free to contact York at firstname.lastname@example.org.
After working for Marsh, a risk management company for 15 years, ista has given York the opportunity to become a Sales Manager covering the South East, South West, West London and the Home Counties, which is an exciting new chapter for the company.