Balls For Borno


The mission of Refugee Soccer is to create moments of hope and happiness through soccer. We originally started this effort in Nigeria, West Africa. In late 2016 our founder, Adam Miles, was struck by the unbelievably tragic news flowing out of the Northeastern part of Nigeria, mainly a state called Borno, and the mission now known as Balls For Borno was born.

(Read the original post here and a compelling  NY Times article published shortly after the launch.)

Sadly, but not surprisingly, you will see from the news clippings below that not much has changed.

The GREAT NEWS is that with the help of many generous supporters we have made change! We have nearly raised the 100 balls we said we would. Check our progress here.

Our founder was on PBS in Utah last year discussing the mission. Watch the short video here.


Here is the plan for Balls For Borno

MISSION-Deliver 100+ soccer balls to youth in an IDP or Refugee Camp in Borno State, Nigeria.

PURPOSE-Ameliorate suffering with smiles that only soccer can bring.


  • Safely and equitably deliver 100+ donated soccer balls to youth in these camps.
  • Show the world that if a small NGO like BRIDGES can make an impact then much larger NGOs can and should immediately focus their attention on providing food and essential resources to Borno.
  • Further display the credibility and capability of BRIDGES in executing this mission to secure financial support from potential partners and funders so that we can continue to operate our mission to “Save Lives by Changing Futures” through our efforts with Save-A-Thon and Refugee Soccer.
A map of NE Nigeria. This mission takes us into the heart of Boko Haram territory.


If we are going to go, and we ARE, we have to go NOW! Children are dying and the people in these camps are in unthinkable conditions and mired in hopelessness.

ASAP depending on fundraising and the security situation.

COST- Total ~$20,000



  • Donate whatever you can here. Or you can buy an indestructible soccer ball from our new partner, OneWorldPlay. Check it out here.
  • Start a “Balls for Borno Campaign” to buy/gather balls to be hand-delivered to youth in Borno, Nigeria. Click here if you are interested and we will respond immediately with more details.
  • Share this campaign with your social network broadly and often using the #BallsForBorno



  • Why soccer balls? Why not food?
    • Soccer gives these kids something to do. They LOVE soccer and it’s that one thing to help get their mind off the horrible conditions in which they live. Soccer helps build a sense of community and teamwork and contributes to their health and well-being.
    • BRIDGES is simply not equipped to provide food and other necessities. That is the express mission of much larger NGOs.  We are sticking to what we know.
  • Why Nigeria?
  • Can I go with you?
    • There is room for a maximum of TWO volunteers to come with our founder, Adam Miles, and actively help execute the mission. It will cost $7,500 “all-in.” You need to be an adult, have passport in hand, life insurance paid up, and be ready to move immediately.

The kids are waiting for someone to show them they matter. That’s us. Let’s go!