No, this is not going to be about the financial state of Birmingham City F C; it’s just some thoughts on the gap between the haves and the have-nots in football and in the world in general.
I had a chance to look round the VIP area at St Andrew’s when I went there for the coffee and cake event in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support. I saw the lounge where the owner could relax, with his picture hanging on the wall and the posh toilet. I wasn’t too keen on the idea of having a BCFC logo on the floor of the posh loo (stepping on it would feel wrong) but apart from that design detail I’d much prefer it to the ones I normally use at the ground. And those are far better than some I’ve used at other grounds; most travelling football fans will probably have seen some pretty lousy loos.
The gap between VIP and ordinary fan is wide but not as wide as the gap between the ordinary British fan and the 2.5 billion people in the world who don’t have somewhere safe, clean and hygienic to go to the loo. They have to use fields, streams, railway lines, canal banks, plastic bags or buckets. Bad sanitation is one of the world’s biggest killers. The lack of loos leads to other problems as well as disease; people get bitten by snakes as they squat and women are the target of sexual attacks as they walk to the edge of their villages late at night.
Last Friday, the sixth form at King Edwards put on a charity concert in aid of Toilet Twinning, a brilliant organisation who helps in the fight against disease and poverty by providing basic sanitation and clean water. I’ve been a supporter of this cause for some time but the concert reminded me of the need and inspired me to spread the word. Hence this post. If you want to find out more, head over to the Toilet Twinning website. And if you’re just looking for a way to waste time, under the Fun stuff tab there’s a game where you have to connect the pipes before the toilet flushes.