Since October 2013, the Lukas Podolski Foundation has been sponsoring the RheinFlanke. “I’m delighted to sponsor the RheinFlanke and be able to support this great Cologne-based initiative. The RheinFlanke and I share the belief that you can encourage social integration through sports – from playing fields to apprentice positions” the pro explains in relation to the decision to sponsor the initiative.
Since 2006, the RheinFlanke has been committed to those who start out with fewer prospects because they come from a socially disadvantaged or educationally deprived background and environment. Today, the project reaches 1200 young people at seven different locations in North Rhine-Westphalia.
Sport is the key: it enables the simplest and best access to those who do not feel like they have been reached out to by conventional youth services. Football takes first place, but many other sports are also available. Through its ‘door opening’ abilities, sport is also used to teach values such as respect and fair play. Lukas Podolski is particularly convinced of this hard-hitting approach: “The RheinFlanke staff do not just sit in some office waiting for the kids; instead they go out onto the streets, with a ball in tow, onto football fields or school yards, to social hotspots in Kalk, Meschenich and Porz.”
RheinFlanke’s commitment is shown through many different actions and approaches.You will find further information here.