Kojo Annan welcomes Copa NYC as model for Africa Ten soccer project for youngsters

Kojo Annan, businessman, soccer enthusiast and son of former UN secretary general Kofi Annan, praises New York championship this weekend as a model for the Africa Ten film and project for young soccer enthusiasts ahead of 2010 FIFA competition
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July 25, 2009 - PRLog -- Embargo: Immediate
Kojo Annan, President of the Africa Ten Charitable Foundation, today welcomed the challenge of playing in the CopaNYC soccer championship in New York this weekend as a model for his charitable work for young African footballers and lovers of the beautiful game everywhere.
Kojo Annan believes that the Copa NYC, which brings together soccer loving New Yorkers of a miriad of nations reflecting the cosmopolitan nature of the city, will be a model for the Africa Ten project – designed itself to help young African soccer enthusiasts ahead of and as an enduring legacy long after next year’s World Cup Finals in South Africa.
The Copa NYC is a 16-team tournament, with “national teams” made up of players representing their ethnic and national communities, will be played at stadiums in Queens, New York over the next week, culminating in the final on August 2. Kojo Annan himself will play for the Ghanaian team, NYC Ghana.
The Africa Ten Foundation will be launched with the release of a documentary film early next year, which will feature British Premiership stars Didier Drogba, Michael Essien, El Hadji Diouf and Emmanuel Adebayor. A percentage of the profits of the project will go to help build football pitches in Africa for youngsters keen to improve their skills.
The project also has the support of Kojo Annan’s father Kofi, the former UN Secretary General, who has recorded an interview for the film.
Kojo Annan said: “The Copa NYC brings together people from all walks of life under one banner and for one common purpose – the love of the game of football.

“It is the type of formula that we would like to ultimately use with the Africa Ten Foundation, with sports as a tool for development and social change.
“The teams in the Copa NYC are all representative of New Yorkers and have been picked to reflect their various communities. However, as the world is increasingly a global village, many of the teams are made up of nationals of numerous countries whilst all playing under one flag.

“I am taking part because I play with a regular group of fellow soccer fans in New York that reflect the cosmopolitan nature of the city. As President, I naturally named the team NYC Ghana. Whilst there is a core of Ghanaians, the team also has players from Liberia, Guinea Bissau, Ivory Coast, Cameroon, Italy and France.

“We are all participating for the love of the game. Football has always been my passion and this is reflected in my project Africa Ten.”

- ENDS –

Notes to Editors:
Africa Ten is a documentary feature film released globally in advance of the FIFA World Cup 2010 South Africa™.

The film features Football legends - past and present, world leaders, community activists, entertainers, administrators and ordinary people from the streets of Africa.

While the production will have global distribution, Africa Ten will also have an online program that expands the film experience.  AFRICA TEN’s web-based short films will feature Africa’s greatest soccer players, and show the positive influence football is having on Africa’s youth.  These web-based short films will generate excitement for youth football fans over the internet.

Will.I.am, Africa Ten partner and executive producer, is one of the most influential pop culture personalities in the world today.  Will and his brand partners, namely American Express and Black Berry, are renowned for engaging global audiences through interactive media - Will has agreed to, create original music for A10, create A10 Video, be the A10 spokesman, Host SA concert, and host A10 Channel on Dip Dive.

Dip Dive is a next-generation online community platform developed by Will.i.am  to revolutionize the media business.  The site re-engineers the relationship between musicians, creative executives and fans allowing greater connectivity, fostering celebration and innovation. As a part of its online program A10 will be a channel on Dip Dive.

Some of the world’s great football players have committed to participate in the film such as  Didier Drogba  (Cote D’Ivoire), Sulley Muntari (Ghana), Obafemi Martins (Nigeria), Abedi Pele (Ghana), Michael Essien (Ghana), Mido (Egypt), El Hadji Diouf (Senegal) and Emmanuel Adebayor (Togo).

The film and online program will introduce and launch the A10 Charitable Fund/Foundation. A10 is committed to contributing 10% of its proceeds to A10 Charitable partners and inviting its brand partners to match its contributions. A10 Charitable Fund is dedicated to African youth development through sports. We will work through A10 Charitable partners such as RIGHT TO PLAY, SCORT, GRASS ROOTS SOCCER, and PEEPOD.  Kojo Annan will serve as the president of the A10 Charitable Fund/Foundation. The A10 Charitable Foundation will be the A10 legacy.
A10 Charitable Foundation will make a formal invitation to an Honorary Chair and board, prominent - distinguished - high profile individuals to serve through the duration of the A10 events as a source of expertise and provide access to resources. The Africa Ten Charitable program is led by Africans and for African children.
In addition to his responsibilities as Vice Chairman of AFRICA TEN, Kojo Annan will be assuming the Presidency of the A10 Foundation.  The Foundation is a vehicle through which we hope to sustain long-term efforts on behalf of the youth in Africa.  His father, former UN Secretary-General, Kofi Annan, kindly provided Africa Ten with a filmed question and answer session on Sunday, May 31, when he was in London as the Guest of Honor for the FA Cup Final.
The A10 Team have been invited to two major conferences this summer focused on sport and philanthropy.  The first is the Beyond Sport Summit in London, which is hosted by former British Prime Minister, Tony Blair, and Archbishop Tutu. The Summit is designed to celebrate, promote and drive forward sport-led social change. The Summit aims to bring together those who use sport as a vehicle to create social impact, with opinion-formers from the worlds of business, government and sports federations whose views and decisions can have substantial impact.
A10 has also been invited to participate and give an address during the opening dinner at the SCORT International Forum on Football for the Community taking place in Bad Ragaz, Switzerland in late July. The two day forum offers representatives of European football clubs, peace and development organizations as well as personalities from the fields of sport, politics, science, economy and media to meet and exchange ideas about sport as a tool for peace, development and social change.  The conference is under the patronage of the United Nations’ Special Advisor on Sport for Development and Peace.
For further information and interview requests please email kojoannan2@gmail.com
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