Ballymoney football star Liam Beckett has kicked off four teams thousands of miles away.
Over the years, the former Irish League player and manager has donate boxes of footballs and strips to the Drop Inn Ministries to help develop teams in many third world countries. And thanks to his generosity he now has football teams named after him in Rwanda, Albania, Belarus and Burkina Faso.
Edwina Chambers from Drop Inn Ministries, Ballymoney explained: “Liam has made an amazing contribution to so many children around the world.
“He has supplied us with boxes upon boxes of these good leather footballs for many years now and over the years this has helped us to develop four football teams in Rwanda, Albania, Belarus and Burkina Faso. He has also given them football strips and even the pumps to blow up the balls.”
However Liam’s generosity doesn’t end there and last week he gave Edwina another two full football strips to take to Burkina Faso, West Africa to help another football team.
Edwina continued: “A group from the Beckett Academy are going out next week to Burkina Faso with the Drop Inn Ministries in Armagh and they are taking the strips with them.
“Just to see the childrens’ little faces light up when the group arrive is a delight however seeing them when they get the strips is something else.
“Liam has made a tremendous contribution to these childrens’ lives and everyone at Drop Inn Ministries would like to thank him very much - he has been more than good.”
Praising the charity and fund-raising work of the Ballymoney community, Edwina continued: “Everyone’s efforts in Ballymoney, including Liam’s, have helped to rebuild the lives of the people affected by the war and the genocide in Rwanda as well as the plight in many other places.
“In Burkina Faso the community were suffering from snake and scorpion biting them during the night. However thanks to the donations from Ballymoney we were able to buy solar lighting. These are everlasting and can be charged in the sun and then used at night to scare away the snakes and scorpions.
“This simple gesture has save so many peoples’ lives, especially children who bites were going undetected and causing fatalities.
“Once again a massive than you to everyone.”