I'm a 16-year-old student and soccer player from Wisconsin. I started Peace Is the Goal as a goodwill initiative in October 2006 when I was 13 years old. This ongoing program aims to make the world a better place to live in by spreading the message of peace and giving through the world's game, soccer.
Many kids in the world have little, and are desperately looking for something positive to do. They love the sport of soccer, but many don't have real equipment to play the game. Rocks, plastic bottles or garbage are often used as balls.
The genesis of my foundation began during a car drive from Milwaukee to Fort Atkinson. During that trip, I detailed to my dad my desire to make a difference in the world.
I developed the concept for Peace Is the Goal, as well as its name. I followed that up by earning the initial seed money for my initiative. I made money by refereeing several soccer games each weekend and providing babysitting services at night. I set up meetings with local sporting goods distributors and brokered deals with them to purchase soccer equipment.
I developed Peace Is the Goal websites through DoSomething.org. Ever since then, I have found worthy causes and contacted point people at those entities. I pick, pack and ship the equipment (balls, cleats, goalie gloves, shin guards, pumps, storage, uniforms), and ensure that the supplies make it to their proper destination.
Over the initiative's first 29 months, I completed 41 projects and delivered more than 825 pieces of soccer equipment (worth nearly $10,000) to orphanages, schools, missions, churches, agencies and individuals that house, shelter, educate and provide direction to kids. These kids live in dire conditions in countries such as Afghanistan, Colombia, Democratic Republic of Congo, Djibouti, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Ghana, Haiti, Honduras, Italy, Iraq, Jamaica, Kenya, Kosovo, Mexico, Nicaragua, the Philippines, Romania, Rwanda, Serbia, Senegal, Uganda, Vietnam and the United States.
I have worked hard to advance this organization from a good idea to an initiative that is tangibly helping others. If you would like to contribute soccer equipment or funds to this cause, please let me know. I am seeking donations of equipment or funds in order to help expand the reach of my foundation. Equipment can be new or gently used soccer balls, soccer cleats, jerseys, goalkeeper gloves or any other soccer items.