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Mali’s Care Club Foundation expands its offerings to help kids and communities thrive

Care Club Foundation (CCF) is using soccer as a framework to help young people in Bamako, Mali, access the resources they need to grow and thrive—mentorship, academic support, solid meals, clean water, and more.

Building on a previous Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF) grant that supported a summer soccer camp for students in Bamako and the creation of clean water infrastructure at a local school, a new grant from SNF continues and significantly broadens CCF’s footprint.

CCF’s soccer program, which provided 70 students with sports-based mentorship, free meals, and health checkups over the summer, is continuing to serve those same kids through an afterschool program every weekday afternoon and is expanding to encompass age-tailored academic assistance.

The newly created CCF Study and Recreation Center will host tutoring in English, French, and math and will provide access to computers and other academic materials. Giving the organization a stronger physical presence in the communities it is serving, the Center will also be the site of weekend soccer games and other activities.

Just before the turn of the year, CCF inaugurated newly drilled wells and water tanks in two villages near Bamako: Kamale, 40km from the capital, and Dogoumale, 25km away. These, like the well and tank set up through SNF’s first grant, will provide a permanent source of clean water not only to students, but to all residents of the community.

Care Club Foundation was launched in 2021 by Ismaila Konate to promote youth development in Mali. SNF believes firmly in the power of sports to bring people together, provide a framework for personal growth, and break down barriers. Soccer especially, with its simple setup and worldwide popularity, can be a vehicle for inclusion, health, and hope.