Nobody could argue that soccer is the most popular sport in the world. But children who live in economic circumstances where they can’t afford to purchase a soccer ball are forced to improvise by making their own.
Although they’re creative, these “rag-balls” don’t stand up to the vigorous beating that soccer balls take during play.
In Brazil, you can hardly go anywhere without seeing a group of people playing the game, regardless of their age! From the beautiful beaches to the streets of every city in the country, soccer lives and breathes in Brazil. That’s where Tim and Lisa Janhigen got their idea for an organization that donates soccer balls to children who don’t have them.
The American couple were inspired by Brazil, a mecca for soccer players and fans alike.
With the help of an initial investment by super rock star and humanitarian Sting, the Janhigens created a ball out of a kind of cheap indestructible plastic used to make high chairs and shoes. The ball is strong enough to handle even the harshest of conditions.
Even if a car runs over it, it returns to its original shape within seconds!
To help in their endeavor, the Janhigens created the organization One World Futbol. Their goal was to give a ball to every kid around the world who wants to play soccer. Talk about setting the bar high! For every ball that’s sold, they donate one to a child.
Today, well over a million balls have been given to kids in more than 150 countries.
First founded as a certified Benefit Corporation before the final game of the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa, the One World Play Project manufactures, sells, and donates the balls. In May 2012, Chevrolet became an official sponsor, and by the end of that year, the company purchased and donated one and a half million One World Futbols. Their mission continues to this day.