Representing the commitment of numerous football players in times of the Corona crisis, the German Football Ambassador Association (Deutscher Fußball Botschafter e.V.) awards this year’s honorary award to the initiators of WeKickCorona, Joshua Kimmich and Leon Goretzka. Together, they launched their idea for immediate aid for corona virus victims, and with a personal donation of one million euros, they also gave the kick-off themselves.
Over € 3.7 million have been collected so far and 90 aid projects in Germany have already been selected or supported. Not only more than 2,700 private donors but also prominent football players in Germany, such as Mats Hummels and Julian Brandt, have responded to the appeal. With Leroy Sané (Manchester) the initiative then became international and within a few days other “ambassadors of German football” playing abroad were on board, including Thilo Kehrer and Julian Draxler (Paris), Benedikt Höwedes (Moscow), Benjamin Henrichs (Monaco), Max Meyer (London) or Julian Weigl (Lisbon).
Roland Bischof, President of the German Football Ambassador Association: “We honour Joshua Kimmich and Leon Goretzka with their initiative on behalf of all those who, through their commitment, support this great project in order to provide rapid assistance.”
The official handover of the award unfortunately cannot take place this year at the annual award ceremony by the German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas in May, as this event had to be cancelled due to the Covid-19 virus – a replacement solution is currently being worked on. Nevertheless, both initiators were very pleased about the recognition of their initiative by the award.
Joshua Kimmich: “Health is above all, and the solidarity of all of us is more than ever in demand in these times. This was and is our common drive. We are grateful for the tremendous support.” Leon Goretzka added: “This joint initiative is an expression of giving and helping each other. This is exactly what is important in the current situation. We can only do this as a team.”
The Honorary Award of the German Football Ambassador Association has so far been presented to personalities from the world of football who have made a special contribution to society and to the positive image of Germany in the world through their personal commitment. Last year’s award winner was Bernd Schuster for his work in Spain. Rainer Holzschuh, who chairs a top-class jury, commented on this year’s choice: “Joshua Kimmich and Leon Goretzka took the initiative for Corona Help out of their own motivation and thus set off a pleasing wave of helpfulness. This deserves great respect!”