The Arkansas Rush Soccer organization has donated an estimated $700 worth of uniforms and equipment to their sister soccer club in Ghana earlier this month.

Goods were hand delivered to the head of the Ghana Rush Soccer program as part of a larger humanitarian and medical mission trip sponsored by a local ministry. The Arkansas Rush has clubs in Central Arkansas and Jonesboro.

Uniforms and equipment were collected and donated by local Arkansas Rush Soccer club members, spearheaded by parents Bret and Sandra Carroll of Conway as part of REACH, the organization’s used equipment collection program. Rush Equipment Assisting Children (REACH) collects gently used or unwanted soccer equipment from Rush and other community members to donate to underprivileged children throughout the world. 

Central Arkansas athletes provided socks, soccer jerseys, referee jerseys, soccer balls, T-shirts and a first-aid kit for their Ghana friends. Items delivered were limited only by the amount of packing space the team had available, according to Bret Carroll, who was part of the team that traveled to Ghana. "Although it doesn’t sound like much," Carroll said, ([the Ghana Rush) were very appreciative." Items were distributed in early December during a camp for players age 8 to 19 in the eastern region of Ghana. According to Ghana Rush director Nana Owusu Osei Bempong, this is the first time these players have ever had uniforms for their team. 

With the relationships that were established through the donation, plans are already in the works by the Carrolls and the Arkansas Rush to provide ongoing support to the Ghana club. Donations of gently used uniforms, socks, cleats, soccer balls, referee gear, training cones, first-aid supplies or even money to help defer the shipping costs are greatly appreciated. Contact the Arkansas Rush at 501-203-RUSH (7874) for more information.

The Arkansas Rush is composed of approximately 1,100 youth soccer players from across the state, is part of a larger international organization, Rush Soccer. The Rush is the largest youth soccer club in the world with nearly 40,000 players in the United States and across the globe, including clubs in Africa and Asia.

The mission team who delivered the soccer equipment was composed of seven individuals from Conway and Pocahontas on a 10-day humanitarian and medical mission trip to various locations in Ghana. In addition to giving out soccer equipment, the team also distributed mosquito nets, medicine, soap, toothbrushes and Bibles. The also evaluated the condition of a water well funded by several of the organizations they represented. The trip was sponsored by Holy Ghost Ministries, a Conway-based, non-denominational organization involved in Christian ministry, missions and humanitarian projects in the United States, Africa, The Philippines and throughout the world.