Trust chair Keith Morgan was a member of the organising committee involved in this year’s Homeless World Cup. Keith takes a quick look back at the tournament, won by Mexico in both the men’s and women’s competitions.
The end of July and early August 2019 saw the HWC World Cup Tournament hosted in Wales for the first time in its 17 year history, with over 50 countries and over 500 players from across the globe taking part.
The tournament was set up to raise awareness of the issue of homelessness and the wider issue of social exclusion.
Hollywood actor Michael Sheen was a key patron of the event as part of the organising committee. He did a remarkable job in giving of both his time and his money to ensure that the event went ahead as planned.
The tournament , held in a specially constructed tournament site in Coopers Fields just behind Cardiff Castle walls , proved to be a great success with large crowds watching games throughout the week on all three pitches and over 30,000 visitors to the site over the week to both watch the football and take part in various family activities.
Also on site was a marquee at which several debates were held about homelessness and related issues. Most such debates attracted capacity audiences. On some evenings, entertainment was provided on stage by a number of local bands, including musicians like James Dean Bradfield of Manic Street Preachers.
Feedback received since the event from countries all across the world has been extremely positive , with so many people saying how well they were received and treated not just at the tournament by the people of Cardiff generally . This is a great tribute to our city.
In 2020 the next tournament will be held in Tampere, Finland, in June where Cardiff will certainly prove to be a hard act to follow.
The Homeless World Cup was awarded the Great Sport Story of the Year award at BBC Wales’ Sports Award event at the Celtic Manor in Newport.