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In January, the Gibraltar FA received a UEFA Circular relating to the UEFA Foundation for Children, an independent foundation which aims to help children and safeguard their rights. Established in 2014, UEFA encourages its Member Associations every year, to nominate a local charity which provides support in the areas of children’s healthcare and education, as well as promoting access to sporting activity, facilitating children’s personal development and fostering the integration of minorities, for an award of EUR 50,000. 

Consequently and continuing the longstanding relationship the Gibraltar Football Association has developed with Help Me Learn Africa, (initially by supplying the charity with football kits to allow youngsters in a remote part of Ghana to play organised football), the Gibraltar FA took the decision to nominate this amazing local charity, founded and run by Louise Barea, as a worthy recipient of this year’s Award.

The nomination was prepared and submitted by the Gibraltar FA in conjunction with Help Me Learn Africa in March of this year, highlighting the work done by the Charity in Ghana as well as the achievements of its school’s football teams who proudly wear Gibraltar National Team kits at all of their matches.

Today, the Gibraltar FA has received confirmation that the UEFA Foundation Board of Trustees have decided to award this year's EUR 50,000 to Help me Learn Africa.

Reacting to the fantastic news, the Gibraltar FA’s General Secretary, Ivan Robba stated:

“This is a fantastic recognition for Help Me Learn Africa, and a first for a Gibraltar charity, as the UEFA Foundation is a prestigious foundation that has worked with many charities worldwide. I have known Louise for many years and have been following her incredible work with Help Me Learn Africa which goes from strength to strength. Her dedication to the cause is exemplary, and I had no hesitation in nominating the charity for this award. I am extremely happy for her and all those who will benefit from this award, and also grateful to the Board of Trustees of UEFA Foundation for Children for choosing our nomination.”

Louise Barea, founder of Help Me Learn Africa is overjoyed at receiving this award from the UEFA Foundation for Children. She stated:

“I am in complete shock. I really didn’t expect to receive such recognition, but it just proves what I believe; that in life the more you give the more you receive.  This award will have a huge impact on the lives of thousands of children living below the poverty line  and I am excited to show the world all that we can do with it.

Thank you UEFA Foundation for Children for choosing Help Me Learn Africa, and a massive thank you to Ivan Robba for nominating us and to the Gibraltar FA for the ongoing support, trust and faith in me and my charity.”