6 September 2016

How old were you when you landed your first job?

 

Flavio Souza started working at the age of nine. In addition to his schooling during the day, he would endure shifts on a construction site at night to help provide for his family. It's not the kind of story you necessarily expect to end well.

 

And yet, 12 years later, he stood confidently before a global audience in France to discuss the future of football for good.

 

The occasion? The KickAppCup final. Powered by streetfootballworld and SAP, the KickApp Cup is a series of events that uses football to promote tech-based skills in disadvantaged communities all over the world.

 

 

 

Regional instalments were held in Brazil, India, the USA, Hungary and Israel, where mixed teams of SAP developers and football for good participants competed to create an app prototype aimed at empowering football-based NGOs.

 

Flavio was one of 150 young people to compete in the series and, as a member of the winning team in Brazil, he earned himself a trip to Europe for the global final, which was staged across Heidelberg, Germany and Lyon, France.

 

In Heidelberg, the winning team members exchanged their ideas at the SAP AppHaus and developed a collaborative concept for a global football for good app. This was followed by a trip to Lyon for Festival 16—an official event of the UEFA Euro Championships—where they presented the concept to 50 football for good experts from all over the world.

 

"Education is very important and if you have aspirations, or a fixed career goal, then you won't give up easily," explained Flavio from the final. "I can tell children and teenagers at home about my encounters and experiences at the KickApp Cup and motivate them to keep going. Everyone has a chance."

 

But it's not just the young participants who gained valuable insights thanks to the series. The 150 SAP developers and design thinking coaches who took part were educated on the use of football to drive social change and experienced first-hand how the beautiful game is strengthening disadvantaged communities.

 

“It’s astonishing how fast the groups mingle and people create new contacts," explains SAP design thinking coach Barbara Reis. "Football really is the passion that connects us all. And even better, the young people simultaneously learn about the opportunities that IT can offer them. It’s an invaluable experience.”

 

Season 15/16 of the KickApp Cup may have drawn to a close. But its impact will be felt for many years to come.  

"Education is very important and if you have aspirations, or a fixed career goal, then you won't give up easily." 

Flavio Souza
KickApp Cup Participant
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