Soccer Goal Eagle Scout Project in Ghana

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My boys have been involved in the Boy Scouts of America for years, and more recently, my oldest was eligible to start working on his Eagle Scout project. With our family travel to Africa, we thought it would be a great opportunity to combine the two! I already wrote about the Ghana Make a Difference Children’s Home, and this is who we worked with on this project.  He spoke on the phone numerous times with the owners of the Children’s home, the Hoffman’s, and one of Stacy’s suggestions got my son Tyler REALLY excited. She said they’d LOVE to have soccer (futbol) goals built at the neighboring school that the kids at the group home attend. My idea of gathering art supplies was out the window, for my boys, it’s all about soccer. Thus began his journey to build a goal and collect soccer supplies in the US to take with us to Ghana.

Soccer Goal Eagle Scout Project in Ghana by Capturing-Joy.com

It was a bit tricky to work on, because he had to do so much of the leg work from home, when the project was in a place he’d never been. Tyler started by having a flier created, gathering his scout troop, and delivering fliers to our close by neighborhoods. The flier highlighted his project, and said there was a collection day that was a week away. We were collecting new or gently used soccer items. We hoped to gather at least 100 soccer jerseys, figuring lots of people had they laying around the house.

To read all about the prep work, go HERE.

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When it came time to package everything up, we were grateful we had just enough space. Since 6 of us were flying overseas, we had a 12 luggage piece allotment, and only really needed 6, so the other 6 were boxes we filled with the supplies. We had to purchase 2 full size soccer goal nets on Amazon, along with velcro so the school could take the nets off and on (that was a recommendation for the school).

Our first full day in Ghana, we drove an hour to the Ghana Make a Difference Children’s home, and met Richard, who had been helping Tyler with the process all along. We were put in contact with Isaac the Welder, and through Richard, gave specifications for the type of goals to be made. We just crossed our fingers that they would be done in time (he was told to have them ready June 15th, but we didn’t go til July 4th–just in case) and that they were the right size for the nets Tyler had ordered.

When we got to the home, we had some great helpers carrying the pieces of the posts to the school yard.

Eagle Scout project

assemblig soccer goals in Ghana

Building a soccer goal in Ghana

Ghana Soccer Project

First item of business was taking down the current goal. Here, we have a worker at the home (I think his name is Ebenezer) and a missionary that came to the project to help.

futbol goal taken down in Ghana

Then, there was digging giant holes in the existing spot. They had to be wide enough to fit not just the width of the pole, but the cross bar at the bottom of the pole (see picture above of Ghanaian boy in red shirt holding pole). Nearly DOUBLE the width of the pole, the hole had to be dug, and DEEP! (I’ll admit, I was playing with adorable children for a lot of this time. Those boys had plenty of help on their hands.)

digging hold for soccer goal

Soccer in Ghana

Poles go into the ground

Close up of big hole, and bar on pole.Best way to cement soccer goal into groundThere was measuring….and digging…and crouching…and lifting…

measuring hole for soccer goal post

Ghana humanitarian project

 

Then, they lifted up the goals, and set them in the holes!

Building futbol (soccer) goals in Ghana school

Thankfully, those bars at the bottom really helped when keeping it straight for the next step.

They stirred up some concrete, dumped in a bunch of bigger rocks, and got to dumping it in. As you can see, lots of helpers and on-lookers.

Cementing soccer goals for Eagle Project

Cementing pole into ground

Ghana Eagle Project

Soccer Goals in Ghana school

Seriously, the genius of the cross bar at the bottom meant he didn’t have to stand there for hours as the cement dried, or tie up something to hold it up. Just meant the hole had to be wider.

After the first goal went in, we had to cross the field to do the second goal.

Mission President dad pushing wheelbarrow of Ghanaian kids

My dad pushing a wheelbarrow full of kids for a ride…

That was all the first day, a Saturday. It needed to be in a few days, to let the cement fully dry, then we came back to the school a few days later, to “present” the goals to the school, and make it all official-like. Only the kids who lived nearby or at GMAD were there to watch them put in, but 300 kids go to the school, and were a part of the ceremonial presenting.

There was some major excitement to check out the goals! (I love this pic below)

running to field to see soccer goals

gathering to the goals

Below is Tyler shaking the hand of the school head master with (Uncle) Richard in the background. Richard was our liaison and SO helpful! He is also a member of our church, and I loved hearing his conversion story (more on that later).

Ghana school head master

The nets came out of the box, prepping to to be hung.

presenting soccer supplies to Ghana school soccer nets

prepping the soccer net for goal in Ghana
Mormon Missionary in Ghana

Below is one of my favorite pictures of the project, one of the men that works at the Children’s home, lifted Tyler up to be able to hang the nets on top, while the kids look on.

hanging soccer net in Ghana for Eagle project

Hanging soccer nets on goal

Ghana children through soccer net

Tyler then took the inaugural shot into the goal

Kicking soccer goal in Ghana

They were so excited about the official goal and net, something their school had never had before. They wanted to be able to take the nets down, because otherwise they’d get stolen. They will bring the nets out when they play other schools.

We had a group gather around for a picture before the nets went up.

Soccer Goals in Ghana

Then once they were up, I wanted everyone, so the group got bigger! Sadly, my dad wasn’t able to be there that second day because he was with a sick missionary in the hospital. It was a HOT day, but a great one!

Ghana school children get soccer goals

I think Tyler had a great time, and loved seeing the kids excitement at the new goals at their school. It wasn’t ever in the plans to do his Eagle Project over sea’s, but it was a great experience for all of us to be a part of. Now my second son want to try to top this!

To see the other posts from Ghana, click below:

Family Travel to Africa

Ghana Make a Difference Children’s Home

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Comments

  1. Oh wow, what an achievement! you must be so proud of him. It’s amazing that the things we take for grated (especially in the UK, regarding football)

  2. Oh that is so great!! I’m glad y’all had a lot of fun!! It is so good to help other people!

  3. Nicole P. says:

    Oh wow! This is really amazing! Tyler must be really proud of himself and it’s wonderful that he was able to make a personal connection with the children over something that he loves himself. Those personal connections matter so much at bonding us all (like all of humanity) together.

  4. Way to go Tyler! Love your green Ghana t-shirts!

  5. What a great project and well documented with your photos. Thanks for sharing!

  6. Mackenzie says:

    What a great project! So cool to be able to serve others in such a fun way, work really hard to accomplish something important, and to do it as a family too! You have four great kids- good work 🙂

  7. This is an awesome project! I loved reading about all the preperation and the kids looked so excited to have it! Thanks for sharing!