January 4, 2013 - Major League Soccer (MLS) - Seattle Sounders FC
RENTON, Wash. - The Seattle Sounders FC announced today a delegation will travel to Tanzania, the largest country in East Africa, to host soccer clinics and raise awareness for programs with Washington State ties during a nine-day trip. Defender Marc Burch and former Sounders FC goalkeeper and team broadcaster Kasey Keller will lead the group.
In partnership with the Washington Global Health Alliance (WGHA), the delegation will visit three Seattle-based global health organizations with a presence in the Arusha region in Tanzania including: World Vision, PATH and Washington State University's Paul G. Allen School for Global Animal.
"The trip will help strengthen our partnership with Tanzania and offer an insider's view to three very impactful programs connected to the WGHA," said Sounders FC owner Joe Roth. "Kasey and Marc will be great ambassadors for the team."
The group will also visit the Ngorongoro Crater and the largest city in Tanzania, Dar es Salaam.
The Sounders FC named WGHA a community partner in 2009. WGHA catalyzes innovative partnerships between traditional and unexpected organizations and people to improve health globally and locally. WGHA reaches new global health audiences and activates the global health sector for its more than 60 member organizations.
"WGHA is delighted to partner with the Sounders FC to highlight our state's contribution to improving lives world-wide," according to WGHA Executive Director Lisa Cohen. "While we all admire the team's expertise on the field, the fact that they are making such a commitment for global health is truly remarkable."
Fans will be able to track the delegation's activities in Tanzania via a daily journal and regular features posted on SoundersFC.com, as well the club's Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages.
Tanzania, the largest country in East Africa, is focused on wildlife conservation and sustainable tourism, with approximately 28% of the land protected by the government, the largest percentage of any country in the world. It boasts 15 National Parks and 31 game reserves, 50 Game Controlled Areas, one special Conservation Area (the Ngorongoro Crater) and three Marine Parks.
It is home to the tallest mountain in Africa, the legendary Mt. Kilimanjaro; The Serengeti, home to the "Great Animal Migration" that was named the New 7th Wonder of the World by USA Today and ABC TV's Good Morning America; the world acclaimed Ngorongoro Crater, often referred to as the "Eden of Africa" and the "8th Wonder of the World"; Olduvai Gorge, the cradle of mankind: the Selous, the world's largest game reserve; Ruaha, now the second largest National Park in Africa; the spice islands of Zanzibar; and seven UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Most important for visitors, the Tanzanian people, with a rich history and diverse blend of cultures, are warm and friendly. On December 9, 2011, Tanzania, an oasis of peace and stability with a democratically elected and stable government, celebrated its 50th Anniversary of Independence.