Ball To All is a non-profit (501c3) organization that was founded with a simple premise: keep kids playing – it will help them grow healthier, happier and at the same time, keep them out of trouble.
The mission is simple and captured in the slogan: Every Kid Can Have A Ball.
Imagine kids who have nothing, and nothing to do…
Is the risk of them getting into trouble greater?
Is the risk of them feeling that “no one cares” greater?
Is the risk of them being swayed by extremism greater?
We all want “World Peace”, yet many children around the world do not have the basic means to grow up happy and joyous…
It is a simple problem, with a simple solution.
Saint Jerome, who lived until September 30, 420 AD wrote this in Latin in one of his letters:
“Fac et aliquid operis, ut semper te diabolus inveniat occupatum”
Meaning: Do something, so that the devil may always find you busy
Geoffrey Chaucer, who lived until October 25, 1400 wrote this in old English in Tale of Melibee:
“Dooth somme goode dedes that the devel, which is oure enemy, ne fynde yow nat unocupied.”
In plain English, Idle hands are the devil’s tools.
What’s In A Name?
One day a thought came to my mind – the ancient word in Hebrew for balls is “Kadoorim”. In our day and age, the same word also means bullets. I guess that the round bullets, used in muskets from centuries ago gave the word ball the same meaning. Another word in Hebrew that contains a ball is “Kadoor HaAretz”, which means “Ball of the Land”, which is Earth. Instead of countries and people shooting bullets – we ought to be “shooting” soccer balls at each other.
How Did Ball To All Start?
One day in early 2013, I asked Nikolas Mangu, one of my colleagues who grew up in Kenya, what was the most fun thing to do when he was a kid? “Playing soccer, of course” he said. Soccer is the world’s most popular sport. Growing up with limited means in Kenya meant that kids had to improvise, and make soccer balls out of anything they could find.
In May of 2013, Nikolas was about to go back home to Kenya on his annual vacation. I asked him if he would do me a favor, and deliver five soccer balls to the same school he went to when he was a kid. He obliged and so began what grew to become Ball To All.
I took my kids to a local store in Scottsdale, and we bought five balls. My kids had fun sitting on them, as we had to deflate them before shipping them to Nikolas. We also got a pump, so the balls could be inflated once in Kenya.
The rest as they say, is history and is depicted on our website www.balltoall.org.
Nikolas and his parents delivered the balls to the Kathese Primary School, and it was a momentous occasion. All the kids got out of class into a general assembly to welcome their soccer balls. Nikolas, Jenifer and Gideon Mangu became our first Ball To All ambassadors in Kenya.
After posting the pictures on our young and budding website, support started pouring in, and the idea resonated with people who heard about this simple cause, solving a simple problem, using a simple solution.
Ron Eisen became our second ambassador in Zimbabwe and delivered balls to the ZimKids orphanage and then some. After that, we received requests to help deliver balls to kids in Ethiopia, Nigeria, Jordan, and the West Bank, among others.
How Can I Support Ball To All?
If you like the idea of Ball To All, here is how you can help:
Thank you for your interest in Ball To All, and I hope to see you among our supporters, ambassadors, partners, donors, sponsors, and however you think you can help
Ori Eisen, Founder