Homeless World Cup 2016 hailed a stunning success
Over 50 countries participated in the Homeless World Cup last week in Glasgow, with the event attracting almost 100,000 spectators through the gates.
Mel Young, Co-Founder of the Homeless World Cup said: “We promised that George Square would be the most inspiring place on the planet for the duration of this tournament, that so it has been. The people of Glasgow have taken our players to their hearts, and made this such a very special tournament in the history of the Homeless World Cup. Games have been fantastic fun, and our players have received unstinting support.
“As our players head back to their countries, we wish them every success as they look to build on this experience, and create a life they would want for themselves. Rightly, they should stand tall. We can genuinely say: you are all winners.”
Minister for Sport Aileen Campbell said: “The Homeless World Cup has been a fantastic and exciting tournament that all of Scotland has got behind.
“I would like to congratulate both of Scotland’s teams for their performances. I visited earlier this week and really enjoyed watching some top class matches. It’s been great to see George Square busy every day and is a perfect example of how the power of sport can both transform lives and change perceptions for the better.
“I’m sure the visiting teams and the record 3 million who have watched will remember the 2016 tournament as a great success and I would like to thank everyone involved in organising it.”
This years event has created a lasting legacy programme and will allow 120 volunteers, with experience of homelessness, to continue with training and support, as part of Big Lottery Fund programme
Councillor Archie Graham OBE, the depute leader of Glasgow City Council and Chair of Glasgow Life, said: “Glasgow has hosted many major global events, but there is something quite special about the Homeless World Cup. Just listening to the players, from right across the world, have overcome hardship and adversity is both humbling and inspiring.
“They prove that sport changes lives and I’m delighted that the people of Glasgow have turned out in such huge numbers to welcome to our new friends into their hearts. It’s been sensational.”
Maureen McGinn from the Big Lottery Fund said: “The Homeless World Cup has been an incredible success. More than 120 volunteers – all of whom have been affected by homelessness at some point in their lives – have brought warmth and a huge Glasgow welcome to everyone attending.
“Thanks to our partnership with Glasgow Life, the programme of support will continue long after the last match of this Homeless World Cup, giving everyone involved a chance to improve their lives further through culture, sport and learning.”