Project Completed - Football Play it Forward

Successful Mission to follow up our Footballs.

Rotarians Randal and NIkola along with Dr. Chen Qun and Shen Keqiao say farewell to the students and football players at Mirim School.

Rotarians Randal and NIkola along with Dr. Chen Qun and Shen Keqiao say farewell to the students and football players at Mirim School.

From 11 to 18 August we led a successful mission to Pyongyang with the number one purpose of following up our 200 footballs and uniforms donated on behalf of Mac Millar ( for his Football Play it Forward project.

Mirim School for Orphans

First stop for this project was to visit the Mirim School for Orphans in Pyongyang where we watched a match between the two teams, accompanied by live music by the school band and enthusiastic cheers by students at both ends of the soccer pitch.

We took the opportunity while onsite to scout the school for additional project opportunities including placement of an improved cookstove in the school kitchen, placement of a library, installation of solar water heaters, and collaboration with their greenhouses for the Food Plant Solutions Rotarian Action Group.

In the afternoon after visiting a ShelterBox distribution site in Rakrang district of Pyongyang we visited the Rakrang Juvenile Sports School where we watched the first half of a match and had a nice photo session where he handed out Rotary club banners of our project sponsors.

There were many other elements that we combined into this mission - which we will write about separately. You can see a full set of photos on our flickr site here:

Footballs now on their way to Pyongyang

Finally we can announce that our donation of 200 footballs, uniforms and pumps are packed up and ready to depart Beijing for Pyongyang.

This is probably proof that it requires as much effort to implement a small project as it does a large one, but the nature of this project is about testing the waters and relationship building, so if all proceeds according to plan I expect that we will emerge from our August follow up visit with a strong desire to build on it.

Now on the planning of the site visit.



Mac Millar inspects the Balls

Mac Millar came to town in April to inspect the soccer balls purchased for the DPRK with funds advanced by Rotary Shanghai President Frank Yih's private foundation, Huaqiao Foundation.

Mac was happy with quality and had a few minutes free from his preparations for a TEDx talk at hte Western International School Shanghai.


Watch Mac's TEDx talk here:

Results of the 3 Asian Cup Games

As you will have read, Mac Millar met with the DPRK team when they visited Australia to participate in the Asian Cup.

Unfortunately their 3 matches did not turn out as well as they had hoped. Here are snap shots from each.

Match 1 - DPRK vs Uzbekistan (0-1)

Match 2 - DPRK vs. Saudi Arabia (1-4)

Match 3 - DPRK vs PR China (1-2)

Mac Millar meets the DPR Korean football team in Melbourne


On Monday 12 January Mac Millar travelled from Brisbane to Melbourne in order to meet up with the visiting DPR Korean Football team - in support of our Football Play it Forward Project.

Rotarian Rob Ward and the Rotary Club of Brighton North made it all happen and were able to connect a number of interesting pieces of the puzzle here - and bring enormous smiles to everyone's face. Read Rob's press release here.

Our project is now about 20% funded - but we need more support if we are to reach our target of 1400 soccer balls and uniforms for orphanages in the DPRK.


Update - Football Play it Forward

This week we have a flurry of positive activity around Mac Millar's project.

We have now secured commitments in excess of our original plan for 200 soccer balls and uniforms and so we investigating now how we could grow this for bigger impact, possibly with company sponsors.

Our partner Dr. Jong has designated two orphanages as initial targets and so we are looking into the possibility of expanding our reach into the other 10 institutions on his list. 

We are exploring football jerseys as well as football boots.

Meanwhile Rob just noted that the DPRK team will be heading to Australian in January to compete in the Asian Cup. One game will take place in Melbourne so perhaps a chance to connect with this project.

Renovated May Day Stadium

DPRK top leader watches football match at renovated May Day Stadium

PYONGYANG, Oct. 29 (Xinhua) -- Top leader of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK)Kim Jong Un watched a women's football match on Tuesday here at the newly renovated May Day Stadium, the official KCNA news agency reported Wednesday.

The match was between women's national football team and the Wolmido team, with the former beating the latter 9:0.

Kim was satisfied with the fact that the stadium was remodeled as "an icon of the sports facilities in the country" and a world-class stadium on the occasion of the founding anniversary of the Korean Workers' Party, which marked its 69th anniversary on Oct. 10.

Kim said the DPRK people showed great interest in the 17th Asian Games and the country is now witnessing a craze for sports and physical training. He then gave instructions for turning the stadium into a sports center to better improve the people's cultural life.

A ceremony was held on Tuesday to celebrate the completion of the remodeling of the stadium, which is now able to accommodate about 150,000 people, according to KCNA.

Choe Ryong Hae, member of the Presidium of the Political Bureau and chairman of the State Physical Culture and Sports Guidance Commission, addressed the ceremony. He called for building more facilities and organizing more mass sports activities across the country to benefit the people.

A number of senior officials including Choe Ryong Hae and Hwang Pyong So, director general of the General Political Bureau of the Korean People's Army, also watched Tuesday's football match.

Editor: Fu Peng   2014-10-29 14:10:13