Everton defender Yerry Mina is an advocate of charityboots.org, who collect unwanted boots and offer them to underprivileged children, including shipments to his foundation in his native Colombia. Mina and fellow South American Richarlison started the collection from Everton at Finch Farm earlier this week, by each donating a pair of their own boots. A dedicated drop-off container will be in place at Saturday’s game, where supporters can play their part by donating old boots, or those replaced by Christmas presents, to the charity.
Yerry Mina said: “I’m very happy to be supporting Charity Boots as it will help so many people in England, my homeland of Colombia and other countries across the world. Through the campaign, 500 pairs of boots have already been donated to my charity. Now we are hoping there will be even more with the help of the Evertonians. So, if fans have any pairs of football boots at home that they no longer use, they can donate them at Goodison Park on Saturday when they cheer on the Blues!”
Founder of Charity Boots,
Neil Smith said: “As a football coach for 20 years, the idea came to me when I was getting ready for a trip to Colombia, that it would be nice to take some football boots and donate them to children there, who might live in areas of poverty. I took a suitcase full of about 50 pairs and gave them to a really deprived area in Colombia. Since then, we’ve partnered up with Arsenal Football Club, Loughborough College, some private schools, Cheshunt Football Club, and now we have this great opportunity with Everton. We’ve helped Yerry with over 500 pairs of boots and the next target is 1,000 pairs of boots to The Yerry Mina Foundation. The idea is that with the container at Goodison Park, a big percentage of those boots will be donated back into Liverpool communities. We’ve spoken to a few charities and youth clubs in deprived areas of Liverpool and we’re going to support those communities, so the boots donated at Goodison will be gifted to kids in local areas. We can change the inner soles, change the laces, give the boots a deep clean and bring them back to life. It’s a full circle, but the real concept is to close the gap of poverty and, from an environmental point of view, to reduce waste. It’s all self-funded and it’s got so much value. We’re trying to make an impact in communities where it’s needed and unfortunately, there’s a lot of people out there, especially after Covid, who can’t afford boots. We’re trying to close that gap between the ones that have and the ones that don’t have, so we’re fully behind this and with the support and love from Everton fans and club, hopefully we can make a big difference. Every boot will be reused for a good cause, either recycled or donated to a kid who needs them.”
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