Zambian football team Mukuta FC have become the latest team to benefit from the generosity of Burgess Hill Town Football Club.
They have been given the Hillians’ 2015/16 home kit to wear and it has brought them luck so far as they won their first game wearing the green and black stripes.
Mukuta is located in the region of Western, some 500 miles from the Zambian capital Lusaka. The team is made up of youngsters, most of whom are unemployed, and the club was formed to try to help the players be able to earn their own income going forward, as well as to keep fit by playing football.
Captain Fedson Museti said “We are very, very happy to receive this gift and we would like Burgess Hill Town to come to Zambia to play us.”
Liz O’Brien, a wildlife rescue consultant, (born in Burgess Hill) had this to say about the kit donation from the town. “Here in Africa, football is a universal language, when I want to talk to local people about elephant conflict or poaching, I start by bringing a football out – a few dodgy tackles and goals later, we get to chatting about how communities can go about living in co existence with wildlife instead of conflict. Having spent years building relationships with these communities and especially their football teams, it is an absolute pleasure to see the faces of the players, managers and supporters when they open a kit bag filled with BHTFC kit! Playing most of their games previously in bare feet and ‘skins/shirts or borrowed shirts, it gives them a real sense of pride to pull on a proper kit. And now, they are getting an indirect benefit from the wildlife I want them to protect which gives them a reason to do so. I cannot thank the club enough for their generosity and hope that we can continue to link up… Pre- season Zambian tour anyone?!”
We again thank last year’s caretaker kitman John Goss for his help sorting through the kits to enable this to happen.