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 Gol Appeal
When Gary Speed leads Wales out in the Red Star Stadium in Belgrade next week for Wales' crucial Euro 2004 qualifing game, the Welsh football supporters charity GOL, will have helped make the dream come true for 35 Serbia orphans in the crowd. They have organised for the children from the Dom Za Decu Bez Rodutelja orphange in Belgrade to go to the game !

GOL visit this orphanage next week, where they will be donating, not only tickets to the big game, but football strips donated by Merthyr Tydfil, Cardiff City Ladies and Everton FC, sweets, pyjamas donated from Aykroyd & Sons of Bala and toothbrushes and T-shirts given by S4C children programme Uned 5.

This will be the second visit to the orphange as GOL were out in Belgrade in April when the original game was postponed. Secretary Neil Dymock said "When we visted the orphanage last time, we were overwhelmed by hospitality given by the staff and the children. Everyone was smiling and happy to see us and it was a very humbling experience. We wanted to do something different on our return, so came up with the idea of purchasing tickets for 35 of the children to go to Wales game in Belgrade." 

And chairman Dylan Llewelyn added: "Gl has come a long way since we came up with the idea of the charity and visited three orphanages back in November in Azerbaijan, donating football kits and US$1,500. "In March we brought two Azeri children to sample Welsh life and to be mascots at the game at the Millennium Stadium. "While this will be our second visit to the orphanage in Belgrade, it's only the beginning of our plans. Through the generosity of Welsh football fans we hope to go from strength to strength - promoting a positive image of Welsh fans as well as trying to help those less fortunate than ourselves." 

Sarah Price, Deputy Head of Mission (Deputy Ambassador) at the British Embassy in Belgrade said "GOL made a fantastic impression when they came in April. Sadly, the Serbia & Montenegro verses Wales match had to be postponed because of the awful assassination of the Prime Minister. People here were shocked and depressed by what happened. So the visit by the Welsh supporters was a terrific boost for local football fans - it showe that not everything was gloomy and that visitors from abroad cared about what was happening here in Belgrade. There was great publicity in the local press showing GOL at the children's home, playing a friendly with local supporters - and of course enjoying Serbian hospitality after the match". 

"This is a truly generous offer by GOL to fund for the orphans to go to the game. Children's homes in Serbia and Montenegro are run on extremely tight budgets so the kids don't get many treats. A chance to see their national team is really exciting for them."

"As far as I know Wales are the first football team to help orphanages in Belgrade. One of the newspaper headlines from the first visit was "Wales sets an example for the world" so GOL are definitely trailblazers here."

Anyone who wants to help or donate to the GOL APPEAL. or has Football Memoribilla, including football kits and programmes can contact the GOL APPEAL, by writing to PO Box 2054, Bristol BS99 7UE or email golappeal@aol.com

  


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