love.fútbol and Manchester City inaugurate football pitch in Mexico City
In partnership with Manchester City Football Club and love.fútbol, more than 120 community volunteers have come together to renovate the Deportivo El Coyolito, which today sports a fresh coat of paint, solar energy lighting, and covered stands for spectators.
Newly planted trees and a playground also surround the field for all community members to enjoy. The festivities to celebrate their collective achievement will kick off at 9:30 am, local time, on Saturday, August 12th, when the world acknowledges The UN’s International Youth Day.
In conjunction with Manchester City, Mexico City-based organization Jóvenes Constructores de la Comunidad (JCC) trained 24 young leaders from the community through personal and professional development workshops. The young leaders wanted to develop the love.fútbol project to regenerate their local community by building a football pitch, learning valuable skills for their own employability and creating a safe space for young people to play football, connect and learn.
Originally built over 20 years ago by community members who believed in providing a place to practice sports and recreational activities, El Coyolito deteriorated over time due to a lack of resources to properly maintain it. "My heart is filled with joy to see the community coming together once more to rescue a space that is for everyone: children, young and old," says longtime El Coyol resident Alma Patricia Vazquez, 56 years old.
One of the project’s outcomes is the creation of a Neighbors' Network, who will be trained by love.fútbol to oversee the maintenance and sustainability of the space. "This project gives us strength, and it showed us that it is possible to do something nice together. We created movement in the area, which became a place for families again. I think that space is for posterity”, she said.
"As with all our projects, this achievement is the result of a collective effort by a community of football fans and people who believe in the positive impact sports can have in the lives of young people. The support received by Manchester City and its community of fans has been fantastic and we’re excited to be using the power of football to make a difference to the community", said Manoel Silva, Director of Operations at love.fútbol.
#FutbolMatters was one of the six initiatives selected to take part in Manchester City's global Cityzens Giving campaign in November 2016. The funding distribution was determined by the number of votes cast by Manchester City fans around the world. When the voting closed, the Futbol Matters project by love.fútbol had received the largest number of votes and, as a result, the most amount of funding.