About Us

We believe in the transformative power of play.

Through our work in West London, we have seen hundreds of children from disadvantaged backgrounds, or those that have experienced trauma, become a part of our family through our wide and varied activities, which offer something for everyone.

Established in 2007, we first focused on sports, but since then we’ve added healthy eating initiatives, arts activities, educational group trips, mentorship programmes, and holidays in the UK and abroad.

What binds these programmes is a commitment to creating a safe, open-minded, inclusive and loving environment, where we can play together and happy memories are made.

What We Do

We offer a wide range of programmes and activities- from sports to art to cooking- so that every one of our kids can discover what gives them joy.

If you’d like to keep up to date with our work — please signup to our newsletter here.

Read our Impact Report 2018 here…

Art is all about expression, at times when words may fail us. Our volunteers include art teachers, who help kids discover their creativity and play in new ways, release their inner Matisse or Kahlo- or just simply release.

Days out are our heart and soul: whether we’re twirling on the skating rink, throwing stones into the sea from Brighton beach, filling our minds at a museum or taking a big leap at the adventure centre.

For those of our children who find it hard in groups, our Friends programme offers a caring one-on-one relationship with a volunteer, who can be a stable and positive role model through weekly hangouts.

Seeing new places is very rewarding, so we organise holidays at least twice a year – outdoor summer adventures on the Isle of Wight and autumn stays on a farm in Pembrokeshire, looking after animals and learning how to grow food.

We are happiest when we eat well too, so our Food programmes help our kids learn to cook nutritious meals from scratch and show them how much fun that can be! Thanks to our patrons, we’ve even gone behind the scenes at one of London’s top restaurants, The Ivy.

Music and dance are universal languages!
We invite music teachers to bring in and play instruments from around the world, developing simple dance routines with the kids that they can perform for their friends and families.

The Board & Team

Solidarity Sports has a dedicated board of trustees who help guide our work, along with our founder and director Sean. We are also supported by coaches and administration staff.

Carolyn Arnold

Chair

Carolyn has lived in London for thirty years. Originally trained as a Home Economist, she enjoyed a long career with a German kitchen manufacturer. Carolyn is passionate about making a positive difference in the local community and currently works as a volunteer on the Thomas’s Schools Foundation, Community Outreach Committee and Chairs her local Residents’ Association.

Miriam Lovelace

Trustee

For over 20 years, Miriam taught in inner-city primary schools and worked with young adults with disabilities. At St Cuthbert School, she was a four-time winner of the London Schools Environmental Award. Miriam has taken over 150 children on week-long educational trips to Spain and has extensive experience working with refugee and immigrant families.

Hassan Laroussi

Trustee

Hassan was born and raised in London. After graduating from university, he went to work for Disney in the Far East, working his way up to Marketing Manager for South East Asia and the Middle East. After spending 10 years abroad and travelling the world (over 30 countries!), Hassan returned to the UK where he started his own online business.

Alain Mandy

Trustee

Alain Mandy is the Chief Operating Officer of Wellington Management Funds in London. Alain holds a Master of Science (MSc) in Business Engineering from Louvain School of Management and a diploma in Analysis, Control and Auditing from School for Advanced Business Studies (HEC), Belgium.
A keen fundraiser for charities, Alain even ran the London Marathon for Whizz-kidz. In 2015, Alain spent three months in Peru as part of the Emerging Enterprise Program with the PIMCO Foundation to help poor farmers in South America and reduce poverty through a Financial Model.

Sean Mendez

Founder & Director

Sean was born in London in 1980. He caught the travelling bug early and visited his family in Spain, alone, aged 10. Having graduated from university, he became a filmmaker and produced several documentaries about social concerns. After travelling the world for a year, Sean founded Solidarity Sports in 2007.

Find out more about Sean’s story

Susanne Suhner

Business Support Officer

Zakiya Amlak

Coach

Tae Catford

Coach

Karl Donaldson

Coach

Una

Trustee

Una is originally from Derry in Northern Ireland and has been living in London for almost 8 years. She has over 14 years experience working in the HR industry and is a member of the Chartered Institute of Personnel Development. A frequent traveller to Eastern Europe with her current role, Una loves experiencing different cultures both in a business and leisure capacity. When living in Northern Ireland Una worked for a few community organisations in which she assisted from start up, they continue to make a positive impact in her local community.

Volunteers

We do so much with our incredible team of volunteers – we can’t thank them enough. Here are some of those who keep Solidarity Sports going.

If you are interested in being involved, get in touch!

Abyan Mohamud

Alin Safiani

Amel Sherif

Amira Ibrahim

Batul Bati

Charlie Waterhouse

Claudette Powell

Courtney Taylor

David Silver

Farhana Shaheedi

Francis Kunlay

Hadeel Osama-Elsaigad

Helen Boast

Hinna Khan

Javon Middleton

John Smith

Len Susuki

Lewis Palmer

Luke Tydeman

May-Ann Mercurio

Mariam Khan

Mohammed Elkateep

Rian Jacobs

Salma Mohamed

Sara Elkateep

Sarina Mohamed

Szymon Amatya

Tamara Obeng-Dominiguez

Terrell Jacobs

Vighnarajah Ramsay

Zuni Shaheedi

Testimonials

Our mission is to bring happiness to children, and we care deeply that they find that in Solidarity Sports, a place that lifts them up and brings them joy.

Mother of 2

'I just can’t put into words how grateful I actually am, not even a year with you and my girls have had the most amazing experiences that I could only dream of giving them. What you do is very special, the support of Grenfell and the Hashim family is amazing, all in all the most inspiring group of people I have ever had the pleasure of being around, so I know my girls are in the best, safest and kindest hands, and they know it too, they absolutely adore you all. I could never thank you enough, but here is just a little gesture of appreciation to show what you do goes far from unnoticed. WE LOVE YOU ALL.'

Mother

'I don’t think you understand how much you help these children. You’ve changed my son’s life. You don’t realise how important the work you do is. And you also help me and my daughter too because we get a break from his violent tantrums'

Mother

'Thank you for what you did for my daughters. I feel very guilty about what they have been through and seeing them happy makes me feel less guilty. They really needed this summer programme to help them forget about their sad memories and just be children.'

Partners

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