Wanted: kid escorts for World Cup stars

By admin
28 January 2010

Imagine watching your little boy walking into a packed soccer stadium holding the hand of Portuguese goal-scoring sensation Cristiano Ronaldo. Or seeing your daughter personally wishing Brazilian star Kaká luck before kickoff.

This could be reality if your child is lucky enough to become a McDonald’s™ Player Escort during the 2010 World Cup. YOU, along with our sister magazines Huisgenoot and Drum, is the largest print media partner of the initiative and we’ll be helping to choose the kids who will lead the stars into the stadiums.

Each publication will select 11 children. All in all 1 200 local kids will be chosen and the remaining 200 escorts will be flown in from around the world.

Kids were also chosen to be McDonald’s™ Player Escorts during the 2009 Fifa Confederations Cup and it was an opportunity of a lifetime for 352 South African girls and boys.

Eleven-year-old Bandile Skweyiya of Guguletu, Cape Town, flew to Joburg for the final at Coca Cola Park between the USA and Brazil and escorted American goalkeeper Tim Howard.

“I will never forget all those people in the stadium with their vuvuzelas,” the Claremont Primary School learner says. “I was overwhelmed. And it’s going to be even better and louder at the World Cup. I can’t wait. I hope I get a ticket - watching any Bafana Bafana game would make me happy.”

Madri du Plessis, an 11-year-old of Strand, near Cape Town, was also an escort during the Confederations Cup. “It was a wonderful opportunity . . . it was like being on stage!”

The McDonald’s™ Player Escorts programme is part of Fifa’s Win in Africa with Africa initiative which aims to help the continent with sport development and provide invaluable experiences to young people. Since 2002 more than 3 000 children have had the opportunity to be escorts at tournaments across the world.


- Entrants must be South African citizens between the ages of six and 10 by or on 11 July 2010 and they must be residents of a host city or its surrounds. You may enter as many times as you wish but you can be selected only once. There is a limit of one winning entry per entrant’s immediate family.

- All reasonable expenses for travelling to and from the designated matches will be arranged for the escort and one parent or guardian and paid for by McDonald’s™. Any other expenses are the responsibility of the parent or guardian.

- Escorts will be required to write a diary of their experience and take part in interviews, photo sessions and film recordings before, during and after their participation.

- Don’t miss upcoming issues of YOU for more information on how to enter.

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