Watch: GB Men’s Deaf Football team’s innovative fundraising video for the Deaf World Cup!

Posted on May 5, 2016

If you would like to donate to support the team, click here:

Great Britain’s deaf football have released an innovative video as part of their £25,000 fundraising campaign ahead of the World Cup in Italy in June.

You can see the video below (or click here to see it directly on Facebook)

In the video, which was the brain-child of the wife of one of the players, each member of the team shows off some ball skills before giving some information about Great Britain Deaf Football team’s history and the fundraising campaign.

Then they kick the ball to their team mate off screen in a totally different location even at a different time of day!

The video features some well-known faces in the deaf sports world including Jamie Clarke who scored the dramatic late winning goal in GB’s recent Deaflympic qualifying match.

Jamie is also known for his transatlantic modelling career and is the focus of BBC TV’s See Hear programme this month.

The new interim coaching team of Peter Wood and Daniel Hogan feature in the beginning of the film. Wood was appointed in the wake of long-serving manager Philip Gardner’s decision to step down last month (although Gardner won’t be in charge during the forthcoming World Cup, he will still travel with the team in a supportive role).

16-year old wonder kid Rylan Casey shows off his skills in the video. Casey, from Blackpool, starred for Doncaster in the Deaf Futsal Champions League tournament in Spain earlier this year. He’s also involved in the England Futsal set-up and could feature for either the GB under-21’s or the senior team. The under-21’s also have the European Championships this summer in Poland but it looks like they’ll have to manage without Rylan.

Oliver Manoocherhri skilfully balances the ball behind his knee and hits it to Marios Costi who is waiting outside White Hart Lane, home of the vanquished Premier League runners-up Tottenham. He explains that Great Britain’s deaf team gets no funding – which is the reason behind the video.

Laura Holdsworth, GB’s Media and Fundraising Officer said:

“We did a video because it’s visual, it gets the message across as it stands out. People like to watch things opposed to reading text.

“It portrays our language, the lad’s skills and it is what we are all about. The message was sent through BSL and subtitles and by coincidence it was during Deaf awareness week which wasn’t planned!

“Having 22 lads all over the country and relying on them to do their own videos was a risk but it paid off. We wrote the script on the Wednesday night and it was done by the following weekend.

“We had a few mistakes where some lads did the same lines but it was all sorted very quickly and we actually have a bloopers video coming out soon.“

The video was an in-house affair. Edited by Mario Costi, the filming was done on player mobile phones based on an idea by Michelle Atkinson.

Great Britain’s Deaf Footballers don’t receive any government funding so have to raise the money themselves in order to compete at major competitions.

Earlier in the year, Stoke goalkeeper Jack Butland donated £5,000 to the ladies World Cup war chest That donation represented an unusual fundraising coup especially given the following media coverage which led to a quickly met and then increased target.

However, huge donations from millionaire footballers are few and far between and this fundraising video comes at a difficult time for funding deaf sports, as Laura explains:

“All players as well as the Team Manager and Head Coach have been instructed to raise £1,000 each which is proving difficult as we are having to ask the same people to donate every single time we get to a tournament like the European Championships, Deaflympics and now World Cup.

“There is a tournament yearly now and supporters are saying “Again?!”

“Many believe that GB Deaf Men should be a recognised national football team and getting financial support, especially with all the money that is in professional football leagues.

“We rely heavily on public donations and GB Ladies were very lucky with Jack Butland’s donation.”

If you would like to donate click here:

By Andy Palmer.

Andy is the hearing father of a Deaf son, and is also a child of Deaf parents. He is Managing Director of the Cambridgeshire Deaf Association, runs Peterborough United’s deaf football teams and is Chairman of the Peterborough and District Deaf Children’s Society and teaches sign language in primary schools. Contact him on twitter @LC_AndyP


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