The Independent London Newspaper

 

Funding crisis threatens future of football club formed after pal’s tragic holiday shooting

Old Garchonians, from left: Ben Kahn, Ishmael Osamor, Tom Lytton-Dickie, Adam Bl

Old Garchonians, from left: Ben Kahn, Ishmael Osamor, Tom Lytton-Dickie, Adam Blair and Luke Trip

Published: 27 January, 2017
by KOOS COUVÉE and GABE EVANS

A FOOTBALL club set up in memory of a British tourist who was shot dead in Colombia are raising money to expand their work in the community.

Freddie Garcha, a 22-year-old from Muswell Hill, was killed by a gunman on a moped as he tried to fight off boy ­robbers in the city of Medellín in March 2011.

His friends at home decided to form a football club in his memory and, six years on, Old Garchonians FC have become one of the most successful clubs in the Southern Amateur League. They hold weekly social and sporting events for more than 100 members, helping to keep young adults out of trouble. Now the club, who train at Whittington Park, have launched a crowdfunding bid to expand their work. 

“With amateur football there’s always a fine line between going under and staying alive each year,” said Ashitey Akomfrah, 28, who has been with the club for four years. 

“We don’t have a clubhouse, which is how you would normally generate money, so we’re looking for some other kinds of support.”

While it is run by committed members of all ages – most of who grew up in the area – the OGs’ future is not entirely secure. There are two days left from today (Friday) to reach their goal of raising £1,000, but they hope to raise even more. 

The money will enable them to continue current projects, including football tournaments during school holidays, their annual Phil Cain Memorial Match and offering more reduced memberships. 

They also want to develop the club’s long-term viability by developing their website and improving training and matchday facilities and equipment. 

For more information email oldgarchonians@hotmail.co.uk and to donate visit www.crowdfunder.co.uk/ogs 

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