Sadomba rallies Homeless WC hopefuls

HARARE – Former Dynamos and Warriors forward Edward Sadomba challenged budding footballers who are eying places in the Zimbabwe squad for the Homeless World Cup scheduled for Mexico in November to stay away from drugs.

The Homeless World Cup meant for children from mainly disadvantaged backgrounds is set for Mexico City from November 13-18 and its launch was held at Hatcliffe 3 Primary School recently.

The President’ Emergency Plan for Aids Relief (Pepfar) partnered the Young Achievement Sports for Development (Yasd) to enable young people to access health services at the event.

Several health organisations, all of who are partners to Pepfar, provided services at the tournament.

These included HIV counselling and testing, TB screening and other health information to empower young people to take responsibility for their lives.

Sadomba, who was a guest at the event, had words of advice for the aspiring footballers.

“They (players) have to give their life to Christ, secondly they should believe in themselves because anything is possible,” the former Al Hilal forward said.

“If I am to give myself as an example; I grew up without a father, my father passed away when I was two years old but I have made it in life because of hard work and discipline, they must also stay away from drugs.

“My mother took care of me up to this stage, it was very difficult and at times we struggled to get money for school fees, even money to buy soccer boots.

“We used to play barefooted but it was by His Grace that I find myself in this situation that I am in now.

“My turning point was when I went to Agatha Shaneti Soccer Academy led by Regis Dzenga that’s when the doors started opening up for me. I went to South Africa then came back to Zimbabwe and played for Dynamos.”

Sadomba added: “They must stay away from drugs because they are limiting their chances for success so they must stay away from drugs.

“Pressure is always there but looking at my background I struggled so much together with my mother to make it in life and what I wanted to achieve really guided me and gave me that discipline to get to where I wanted to be.”

The first Homeless World Cup took place in Graz in 2003. The Austrian city welcomed 144 players from 18 countries.

Since then, the tournament has travelled to 15 different cities across the world and has grown to accommodate over 64 teams and more than 500 players.

Speaking at the same event, United States Embassy Charge d’ Affaires Jennifer Savage said: “Strength, endurance and stamina- am I talking about an athlete, am I talking about a person living with HIV? Yes I’m talking about both an athlete and a person living with HIV can have strength, endurance and stamina.

“Among our goals as the US Embassy in Harare is to pass for a healthy Zimbabwe.”