18 March 2012
One of the youngest football players in the Bulgarian "Team of Hope" is 21 year old Borislav Angelov, Bobie, who joined the project in October 2011 and has hardly missed a training session since.
Abandoned by his parents when he was baby he has never seen them since. He spent his childhood in state institutions and attended secondary school in Sofia but needed to pass his final exam in Philosophy in order to graduate. Until launching the Homeless World Cup Project in Bulgaria Bobie was jobless. "When employers see that my skin is darkish they always say: We will call you, but they never do" explained the boy sadly.
From 2010 he lived at the "Saint Sofia" center for temporary accommodation where the Municipality offers him a bed and the chance to take shower. Before this Bobie had been living in the street for a month and a half, sleeping in an abandoned building in Sofia and living on food wastage thrown away by the big supermarkets.
Once hunger even made him commit a crime. He stole the mobile telephone of the security guard of the center where he was staying. The next day however he felt sorry and he acknowledged his guilt to the man. In spite of his hard life Bobie likes to read and finds comfort in reading books. His great dream is to work in the social sphere.
A month after launching the "Team of Hope" project the most popular Bulgarian television, bTV, broadcasted a 2-minute interview with Bobie during and this was re-broadcast every hour in the news bulletins of the bTV radio station. Bobie’s story touched Robert Djerassi (from the organization of Jewish people in Bulgaria, Shalom) and he gave him a job at the Synagogue in Sofia.
During the months that followed, the football player from the "Team of Hope" worked for 4 hours per day, painting and cleaning the building - he proved to be a responsible person who can be trusted and recently Bobie started a second job in the kitchen for elderly people within the Jewish society.
He is now studying hard in order to pass his graduation exams and hopes to start his tertiary education in September.
Bobie says that the football training has greatly helped him in his growth as a person, teaching him discipline, organization and respect for others. Without being a part of the "Team of Hope" no-one would have heard his story, no-one would have believed in him and given him a friendly hand up.
Real football makes real wonders.