Homeless World Cup

The culmination of a year round programme of sports participation, life skills development, leadership programmes and employability training – the Homeless World Cup offers a unique opportunity for the Grenadian players to experience life outside of their own environment, building networks and new ideas to implement in our programme on their return.

The Jason Roberts Foundation selects players from their regular participants during an annual tournament and according to their football skills, behaviour, and personal development plan.

As an already outspoken advocate for football for social change, Jason Roberts MBE joined the Homeless World Cup as an Ambassador – as well as a proud supporter of Team Grenada.

“I support the Homeless World Cup because I can testify as to the power of football,” Jason explained. “I know the values of team spirit, collective responsibility, and working as a unit can literally change people’s lives.”

Recently, the work of JRF has expanded to provide a more holistic programme of support, including mentoring, life skills, education, and training projects within its wider sports activities.

The Foundation has developed accredited training packages in Equality and Diversity Awareness, as well as sporting qualifications that are delivered across the UK and Grenada.

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JRF work with young people at risk of offending, those excluded from school or struggling in the school curriculum, and young people with physical and learning difficulties.

Following Jason’s involvement in the Homeless World Cup, the Jason Roberts Foundation was selected as one of the Homeless World Cup’s National Partners.

“It’s excellent that somebody who has made a name for himself in football has decided to give back. More footballers should follow Jason’s example,” said Homeless World Cup co-founder Mel Young. “He’s walking the walk.”

The JRF were announced official partners in May 2015 and the story began! Through current and previous projects in Grenada, which the Foundation have been delivering in different parishes and through contacts with clubs and organisations, the Foundation sent out trials invitations.

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After a long journey of trials and hard training, the coaches and managers selected the final eight men to represent Grenada in Amsterdam for the Homeless World Cup.

The players were selected on their football skills, however, the Foundation also focused on each person’s social behaviour, and personal developing plan.

Leon Sylvester, 19 years old, who were one of the first players to be selected for the Homeless World Cup, said:

“This is an opportunity to leave Grenada for the first time and play football and it means the world to me. I am going to do my best to make Grenada proud.”

Read all of the players stories here…

During the final trial the Foundation’s media team did interviews and took some footage – watch the video here: JRF are taking debuting Grenadian team to the Homeless World Cup

Homeless World Cup 2015 in Amsterdam

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For eight days, the park hosted players, volunteers, fans, and journalists from all over the world. The men’s and a women’s tournament ran parallel, with a total of 63 teams competing for glory.

Before the tournament started Team Grenada had two days in London to visit the Foundation’s projects in London. The trip to the English capital also included a Wembley Tour, golf, Sight-seeing, English food, friendly football match and mini-golf.

The traveling Grenadian team, including the eight young men, a coach and a team physiotherapist, were the only Caribbean nation at the 2015 Homeless World Cup, and the second ever to attend (the other is Haiti).

Team Grenada quickly made themselves popular at the tournament with both on-pitch prowess and off-pitch warmth and enthusiasm.

The team received an award for Best Newcomers at the Award night in Amsterdam, an award the men proudly showed off as soon as they landed back in Grenada.

Homeless World Cup Glasgow 2016

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The 14th Homeless World Cup kicked off in Glasgow on Sunday the 10th of July with 54 nations competing for the trophy, and the Jason Roberts Foundation backed Team Grenada who represented the Caribbean for the second year in a row.

The culmination of a year round programme of sports participation, life skills development, leadership programmes and employability training – the Homeless World Cup offers a unique opportunity for the Grenadian players to experience life outside of their own environment, building networks and new ideas to implement in our programme on their return.

This was Grenada’s second trip to the Homeless World Cup. In their Amsterdam debut, they finished 34th place. This year, they improved on that, scoring 66 goals as they competed for the Men’s Shield. On the final day of the event, they claimed 27th place.

Asa Glean, a player from 2015, returned as a coach in Glasgow. Watch Asa’s story below.

What’s next…

The power of the Homeless World Cup to inspire some of society’s most vulnerable was palpable in Amsterdam. You heard their powerful stories. Now is the time to take the next step and turn your passion into real change!

The Jason Roberts Foundation would like to thank everyone for their support!

Without help from sponsors, friends and supporters of the Foundation, it wouldn’t have been possible for the eight men to leave Grenada. Through your support we were able to provide the young men selected with the opportunity to meet other players who inspired them, whether it was in football or in their personal lives.

It has been a considerable experience for them to learn and be a part of life-changing experience.

The Foundation will continue to work with these young men and help them get on the right pathway in life, whether they need support with education, work experience or confidence.