Express delivery giant TNT was recently called on by a prospective MP to deliver hundreds of football shirts to English soccer fans in Rwanda, Africa. TNT was contacted by Mark Pawsey, Conservative Parliamentary Candidate for Rugby, who spent two weeks last summer in Rwanda with a group of over 100 volunteers from the Conservative Party.
He was working as an adviser to emerging small businesses and putting his past business experience to good use, he helped companies put together business plans, pricing policies and marketing ideas. While there, Mark took time to play in a football match between a factory team of one of the companies he visited and a team of volunteers and witnessed first-hand the passion the Rwandans had for football and the English Premier League. Once back in Rugby, he decided to launch a football shirt appeal. More than 350 have now been collected.
Mark explained: Its amazing how sport can be a common denominator. Throughout Rwanda I saw people wearing English Premier League football shirts and promised to send over some football shirts that my own children have grown out of. This idea has developed into a project to collect shirts to send out to youngsters and others in Rwanda, where I know they will become treasured possessions. I am very grateful to TNT for their assistance in arranging for despatch of the shirts to Rwanda and I am especially grateful to the very many youngsters who have brought shirts into their schools and to the many headteachers who have supported the appeal by allowing me to tell students about what is happening in Rwanda.
Tom Bell, Managing Director, TNT Express Services UK & Ireland, added: We already have strong links with Africa and are major backers of the United Nations World Food Programmes effort s in Tanzania. Whenever were there, we see how much football can unite people from different nations. This was a great idea by Mark so we were happy to help out.
About TNT UK
TNT Express Services is the leading business-to-business express delivery company in the UK & Ireland and has developed its leading position through organic growth in the express delivery and time-sensitive logistics markets. With an annual turnover in excess of 800m the company employs 11,500 people in the UK and Ireland, operating more than 4,500 vehicles from over 70 locations. To find out more go to our on-line press office at www.tntpressoffice.co.uk or go to our general website at www.tnt.co.uk.
About Mark Pawsey
Project Umubano which means friendship and co-operation in the Kinyarwandan language saw over 100 Conservative volunteers work alongside Rwandans during the Summer of 2008.The volunteers focused on five areas: health, education, justice, the private sector, and a community centre construction project. The volunteers included doctors, nurses, entrepreneurs, teachers, lawyers, parliamentary researchers and local councillors. The Parliamentary Party was represented by ten MPs joining the project, alongside nine Prospective Parliamentary Candidates. The Project took place for two weeks and the volunteers covered the costs of their flights and accommodation.It is the first project of its kind undertaken by any political Party in Britain.