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photo 4Devotees of American football in Serbia will soon be outfitted with equipment generously donated by high schools and colleges in the U.S. states of Ohio and Iowa eager to help develop the sport in the Balkan nation.

A KC-135 cargo plane will depart Mansfield Lahm Air National Guard Base on Saturday, August 1, arriving the following day in Belgrade, Serbia at Nikola Tesla Airport, loaded with helmets, shoulder pads and other pieces of equipment essential for playing the sport that is growing across the European continent.

SONY DSCTexas-based Global Football and Ohio Northern University joined forces with the Air National Guard, U.S. Embassy in Belgrade, and Serbian Ministry of Youth and Sport to create this unique partnership to assist the growth of American football in Serbia. The International Federation of American Football (IFAF) Champions League Final Four was hosted by Serbia last weekend.

Big-hearted educational institutions in Ohio – which has been twinned with Serbia since 2005, resulting in productive joint training exercises, leadership courses, and cultural exchanges – along with Central College of Iowa and Global Football have donated the equipment that will be provided to needy clubs.

School – Donor – City, State
Ohio Northern University Polar Bears
HC Dean Paul,
Tim Glon Ada, OH

Bexley High School Lions
HC John Smith
Bexley, OH

Olentangy High School Braves
HC Mark Solis
Lewis Center, OH

Sidney High School Yellow Jackets
HC Adam Doenges
Sidney, OH

St. Francis Desales High Snhool
HC Ryan Wiggins
Columbus, OH

Villa Angela St Joseph HC
John Storey
Cleveland, OH

Central College
HC Jeff McMartin,
John Roslien
Grace Luder
Pella, IA

Global Football
Patrick Steenberge
Granbury, TX

SONY DSCAmerican football in Serbia will benefit from receiving 34 helmets, 160 sets of shoulder pads, 91 pairs of game pants, 100 pairs of thigh pads, 20 pairs of knee pads, 30 jaw pads, 16 neck Rolls, 12 jerseys, 3 footballs, one hand shield and a clip board.

“We are overwhelmed by and grateful for the generosity of these high schools and colleges who have contributed to the cause of helping the sport of American football continue to grow in Serbia,” said Global Football President Patrick Steenberge. “The eagerness of people to help is underlined by a college from a different state, Central College, joining those institutions that have donated from Ohio, simply because they are eager to help a good cause.”