MADRID – Kazakhstan’s Kostanay Orphanage Team, made up of orphaned children ages 8-15, traveled to Madrid and visited the sports facilities of Primera Liga team Atletico Madrid as a reward for having won their national orphanage league.
“It’s more a social project than just a football team,” said Benkur Kissikov, president of the Baurzhan foundation responsible for the project.
“Our organization aims to improve the level of football in Kazakhstan, as well as promoting adoption in our community, which does not pay much attention to this issue,” Kissikov said.
The organization led by Kissikov enjoys the support of Kazakh Ambassador to Spain Bakyt Dyussenbayev, who said he was “delighted” to welcome the youngsters and treat them to lunch on Wednesday.
“We love being part of such projects,” said Dyussenbayev, who shared football anecdotes with the youths.
The visit also had the support of the Atletico Madrid Foundation.
Atletico, which seeks to promote sports values as well as supporting international cooperation, had invited the young athletes to attend the club’s morning training session at its Wanda sports complex in the Madrid suburb of Majadahonda.
Atletico’s professional football players agreed to have their photos taken with the youths.
Later, the Kazakh youngsters toured Atletico’s Vicente Calderon Stadium before visiting their country’s embassy in Spain.