March 31, 2014 by News

Rio Ferdinand, Kagisho Dikgacoi and Crystal Palace FC Foundations Join Forces for South Africa

KDF RFF CPFC Foundation Join Forces 1 LO
Isagoyarana Football Coaching Development Programme to launch in South Africa
– Programme creates jobs and empowers 18-24 year-old South Africans to develop key life skills
– Three charities partner to expand reach and influence

Monday 31 March 2014, London: The Rio Ferdinand Foundation, Crystal Palace FC Foundation and Kagisho Dikgacoi Foundation charities have joined forces to set up the pilot ‘Isagoyarana Football Coaching Development Programme’ (IFCDP).
The programme, based in Bloemfontein, Free State, South Africa, will empower 18-24 year old underprivileged South Africans to develop the necessary tools they need to give them the brightest future opportunities and the partnership between the three foundations will offer a valuable opportunity to bring about tangible changes in their lives.
In addition to this, by joining together and being stronger, the Foundations can have direct engagement with the South African government and private sector to create an avenue for development of football in South Africa and foster a positive impact on the economy of the country.
After soft launching the Kagisho Dikgacoi Foundation in London with a Gala Dinner back in November last year to raise awareness and secure funding, the KDF has partnered with Dikgacoi’s current club, Crystal Palace FC, and the Rio Ferdinand Foundation who work in the Western Cape.
The IFCDP will target 18-24 year olds in South Africa who face levels of 75% unemployment compounded by a lack of access to education, training and few mentors. The programme will focus on job creation and developing valuable life skills as well as identifying talent both on and off the football pitch.

404 Not Found Kagisho Dikgacoi, Founder andTrustee, Kagisho Dikgacoi Foundation said: “Giving back to the community is something my Grandparents taught me from an early age and something my Mum still reminds me of every day. Ever since I turned professional I have been giving back to the community on a personal level but I can make more of a difference through setting up my own Foundation.

“The KDF has experienced and passionate staff working for us and alongside myself we are glad to be working with the Rio Ferdinand Foundation who have a history of working in South Africa and in particular, Cape Town.
“Poverty is the main factor that affects young people and their chances of reaching their potential not only in South Africa but the whole of Africa. We are a talented country sports-wise but because we have a lack of infrastructure and poverty, these can stand in someone’s way but with the KDF joining together with Rio and Crystal Palace we can help these kids and revive their dreams of whatever they wish to do and that will be great.
“We want to raise as much funding as possible so we can create jobs and keep a long-term commitment. We want to help as many people as we can and if I can say in a year that we have helped 100s of kids get jobs and maybe some working for the Foundation itself that would be awesome.
“I believe I am what I am because of my community and the fans and I would like to thank them and ask them to get involved with us.”

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Cillian Leahy, Operations Manager, Rio Ferdinand Foundation said:
“We have worked for a number of years in South Africa through our networks delivering sporting sessions, coaching and educational workshops and when Kagisho Dikgacoi approached us about his Foundation we were excited to hear the possibilities about how we could fuse together to create many more opportunities for the young people of South Africa.
“South Africa is a country full of possibilities and inspiring young people and by joining together we hope to make a difference to those who do not have the chance of fulfilling their dreams.”

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Donald Forde, Head of the Crystal Palace FC Foundation, said:
“Of course, when Kagisho and his Foundation discussed this work with us we were very happy to come on-board. Alongside the Rio Ferdinand Foundation, we have worked in South Africa and also received some great young coaches on an exchange visit to Selhurst Park recently.
“This is a pilot project and from the awareness and, hopefully, subsequent funding that comes from it, all three parties will be hoping to push forward.
“Crystal Palace FC were the first club to play in South Africa following the end of Apartheid and with this proud tradition it was an easy decision to partner with the Foundation of one of our First Team players.”