Sporting goods needed for Iraqi, Afghani kids

Got excess inventory? Children in Iraq and Afghanistan could use your help – and donations. But you need to act quickly.
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Got excess inventory? Children in Iraq and Afghanistan could use your help – and donations. But you need to act quickly.

World Vision and AmeriCares are coordinating efforts to airlift sporting goods to children in the war-torn countries, with additional help from the Sporting Goods Manufacturers Association's “Sporting Goods To Go” program.

According to information from field staff, needed items include sports shoes, shirts, short pants, sleeping bags, tents and water bottles. Staff also reported that the most popular sports among the children are badminton, volleyball, soccer, table tennis and skipping ropes.

Companies with excess inventory or products can participate by contacting Maria Stefan at the SGMA by emailing mssgma@aol.com, or call 561-840-1150. You must respond within 45 days to participate since the goods will be airlifted with medical supplies.

"Our goal is to not only work with these organizations in the proper distribution of the product, but to coordinate with international sports federations, through our Sporting Goods To Go program in organizing sports clinics for the children," said Stefan. "We hope other allied industry associations will join with us in this effort and ask their members to contribute to the Sporting Goods To Go airlift."

Once a company emails or contacts Stefan with a description of its donation, including number and type of products, shipping instructions will be emailed to the company. World Vision and AmeriCares will ship the product from U.S. locations to Afghanistan and Iraq and have their in- country assignees distribute the product where it is most needed.

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