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A Message from Mel

From humble beginnings in 2001, the Homeless World Cup and its partners now span the globe, with more than 70 countries taking part and more wanting to join. We touch the lives of 100,000 homeless people each year and make a significant change to the lives of many—all through the beautiful game of football.

However, with 100 million people homeless globally, we’re still just scratching the surface. We need to galvanize our global fan base if we’re really going to make a difference. This is why we’ve launched the Homeless World Cup Supporters Club.

My message to people always is: Do small things. If we all do something small, we’ll change the world. This is my personal invitation to you, on behalf of the Supporters Club, to buy a membership. Signing up is a small thing you can do to show your support for our unique social movement.

Together, we can change lives through football.

Mel Young, Co-Founder and President, Homeless World Cup

Our Mission & Vision

The Homeless World Cup is a unique, pioneering social movement which uses football to inspire homeless people to change their own lives.

We envision a world where anyone and everyone who is or becomes homeless can gain access to one of our National Partners’ transformative programmes. Our mission is to inspire homeless people to change their lives through the power of football.

We operate through a network of more than 70 National Partners to support football programmes and social enterprise development. We provide a focus for—and celebration of—their year-round activity by organising and delivering an annual, world-class, international football tournament for national teams of homeless men and women.

The Homeless World Cup is made up of

  • Our Foundation, works with National Partners and other institutions to research and share good practices related to facing the challenges of homelessness, measures the impact of our programmes, develops policy recommendations, and acts as a global advocate for those who lack a voice: the homeless and socially disadvantaged;
  • Our annual Homeless World Cup tournament, an aspirational event that showcases the remarkable work of our National Partners on an international stage; and
  • The Supporters Club has been created to encourage global support from both individuals purchasing memberships and corporate sponsorship investment. The Supporters Club will become a hub for our global community and the platform to communicate the impact that the annual tournament has on homeless people and the projects that are delivered by our international partners.

To learn more about the problem of homelessness around the world, visit the Foundation’s Resource Library.

Become a Supporter Infographic

Why does the Homeless World Cup exist? Who’s in our global network? What is the impact of our annual tournament? And finally, why is your support vital to helping more homeless people? Click on the above infographic to learn more.

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Our Work

Homelessness can force people into isolation, which affects their ability to share, communicate their thoughts, and work with others.

When a homeless person gets involved in football, they build relationships; they become teammates who learn to trust and share. They have a responsibility to attend training sessions and games, to be on time, and to be prepared to participate. They feel that they are part of something larger than themselves.

The sense of empowerment that comes from participating in street football helps homeless people see that they can change their lives; and our National Partner organizations give them the tools they need to do just that.

A survey of Homeless World Cup players showed that:

  • 94% say the Homeless World Cup positively impacted their lives;
  • 83% improved social relations with family and friends;
  • 77% changed their lives significantly because of their involvement with football; and
  • 71% continue to play the sport.

The players at the tournament are the tip of the iceberg, individuals whose efforts and dedication to National Partner programmes—and to changing their lives—have earned them the opportunity of a lifetime. The reach of the Homeless World Cup extends much farther than the 500 players who attend the annual event. The Homeless World Cup movement includes:

  • 73 National Partners
  • Working in 420+ cities
  • With 100,000 homeless people involved every year,

The Homeless World Cup has impacted the lives of 1 million homeless people around the globe since our founding more than a decade ago.


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