Billy Wingrove, our very own leading professional Football Freestyler, was the inspiration as 60 Tottenham school children aimed to raise money for UNICEF today (Wednesday).
The world-famous trickster challenged students from Lea Valley Primary and Woodside High Schools to take part in the 'Keep It Up for Soccer Aid' challenge, which involves people doing as many sponsored ‘keepy-uppys' or headers they can to raise money and help make a real difference to the lives of children all over the world.
After Billy showed the youngsters how it was done, it was they who took centre stage at the White Hart Lane Community Sports Centre in a five-minute skills marathon!
Also giving their tips and advice on the day were Ben Hart and Alex Palmer, both 17 and recently given six month contracts with the Tottenham Hotspur Foundation after winning a freestyle competition in Epping Forest as part of a programme delivered in partnership with Epping Forest Sports Development.
The event was part of Barclays Spaces for Sport's support for this year's Soccer Aid celebrity football match that will raise money for UNICEF, the world's leading children's organisation.
In the run up to the event on June 6, the White Hart Lane Community Sports Centre was one of five flagship Barclays Spaces for Sports sites to take part in a mass keepy-uppy event, with sites in Portsmouth, Sunderland, Manchester and Derby also involved.
Funds raised from the day will go towards UNICEF's work to support vulnerable children across the globe. Children still die every minute of every day from common diseases like measles, diarrhoea and malaria, and millions of children don't go to school, or have food, shelter or clean water. Children all over the world also suffer from violence, abuse and discrimination, are forced to work in dangerous conditions and denied the chance to play. This is wrong, but the money raised by Keep it Up for Soccer Aid will help to put it right.
The artificial grass pitch and resurfaced tennis courts at White Hart Lane Community Sports Centre were opened in 2005 following £600,000 funding from Barclays and the Football Foundation.
Barclays Spaces for Sports is a community sport programme which has created 200 sustainable sports sites across the UK in partnership with the Football Foundation, as well as sites and projects in South Africa, Zambia, the United States and Spain. More will follow in other territories around the world where Barclays operates, including China. Barclays also joined forces with UNICEF to launch ‘Building young futures' in 2008. The three-year programme aims to empower thousands of young people across the world by providing them with the support and skills they need to achieve a brighter economic future for themselves and their communities.
Hannah Willis, Associate Director for Global Community Investment at Barclays, said: "We're delighted to be supporting UNICEF's Keep it Up for Soccer Aid activity by staging these fund-raising events at our Barclays Spaces for Sports sites. Soccer Aid reflects the key aims of our programme, which is to transform the lives of disadvantaged people and tackle key social issues through sport."
Michael Newsome, UNICEF's Director of Fundraising for Soccer Aid, added: "We've had a fantastic partnership with Barclays for several years now, helping children all over the world, and we're really excited that Barclays Spaces for Sports sites are taking up the Keep it Up for Soccer Aid challenge! Across the country children will be coming together to have fun with footballs, be active, and raise crucial money for children all over the world at the same time. Tune in to Soccer Aid on ITV 1 on 6th June to see what a huge difference these activities will make."
Gary Broadhurst, Community Development Manager at the Tottenham Hotspur Foundation which delivers activities at the site, said: "This facility plays an important role in bringing this community together and helping to develop young people, using sport to get them engaged initially so they can then learn important new skills. Their support for Soccer Aid is a great way for them to be reminded of children much less fortunate who don't have the same opportunities for development which they have through access to a facility like this."
If you would like to find out more about Soccer Aid, including how you can be part of ‘Keep it Up for Soccer Aid' go to