The Chelsea striker Didier Drogba is not renowned for his acts of charity, especially on the football field, but it could be that he has been misjudged looking at his actions of the field as a UN Goodwill Ambassador.
He has decided to start his own Charity, the Didier Drogba Foundation, and has pledged to work with the UN to raise £2.5m to build a hospital in Abidjan, where he was brought up in the Ivory Coast.
Drogba said: “I have seen much suffering throughout Africa, especially with my work with the UN. But when I visited a hospital in Abidjan earlier this year, I was shocked by the terrible conditions.
“We hear about all the incurable diseases, but these kids are just as likely to die from diabetes because there is no insulin available.
“It was then I decided the foundation’s first project should be to build and fund a hospital giving people basic healthcare and a chance just to stay alive.’
“I believe in giving people a chance. I know from the experience of my own country how terrible war can be for individuals, families and communities. But I always know that, if people are given a chance, they can achieve many things, even after a devastating conflict.
“I’ll never forget where I came from. I was given a chance to succeed in life, but I always think about those who did not get that chance. We all have to work together if we want to combat poverty.”
Drogba is hoping that the hospital will be up and running by the end of next year, and he has started his fundraising immediately with a Charity Dinner at the Dorchester on the 21st November.
It will start with a champagne reception and will include a charity auction as he goes all out to raise as much as possible.
Tickets are available from £250 and if you are interested in contributing you can find out more details by calling 020 7935 3666 or e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Michael Essien also announced his own foundation this week to help the people of Ghana, and it is great to see players using their priviledges to provide aid for the countries they came from.
Perhaps we will see Frank Lampard start a foundation to help the children of Essex!
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