Korea’s Lee Yong Dae: a true champion at heart

Korea’s mixed double Badminton Olympic champion Lee Yong Dae donated 10 million Korean Won (US$8,700)  to Solibad – Badminton without Borders, on Thursday, in Seoul, before the kick-off of the […]

Korea’s mixed double Badminton Olympic champion Lee Yong Dae donated 10 million Korean Won (US$8,700)  to Solibad – Badminton without Borders, on Thursday, in Seoul, before the kick-off of the third day of the Korea Badminton Open.

Photos: Yves Lacroix/Solibad and Frank Duesberg

Pi Hongyan, Global Ambassador and Peter Gade, Special Ambassador for Solibad, received the cheque from the Korean wonder on behalf of the worldwide charity foundation, for a ceremony that was shown on SBS, one of Korea’s national TV networks.

I am glad I could help Solibad a little bit by giving this money. This isn’t much, and I wish I could do more for Solibad, but our time off court is limited and we have to focus on the game, especially in an Olympic year. But when I saw the flooding in Thailand recently, that really moved me and I wanted to do something for Thailand and these other projects that Solibad is helping,” said the Korean.

Lee Yong Dae has been the Ambassador in Korea for Solibad from the very start of the adventure in December 2009, showing great support from early stages. He took some time to participate in the “One Night with Stars” program in Geneva in March 2011, where he partnered former Olympic Champion and Korean legend Park Joo Bong for the first time ever, in an amazing men’s doubles against Nathan Robertson and Mathias Boe (video of the event HERE). He also gave some of his shirts and rackets for auction for the benefit of the foundation.

Lee, who is currently ranked 2nd in the world with his partner Jung Jae Sung, has always shown interest in Solibad’s projects and he took the opportunity of his home event – the most lucrative badminton tournament – to help some of the charity foundation’s projects. He also donated 25 million won to Korea’s Badminton Association for Elementary schools at the same occasion.

Yong Dae has been very supportive to Solibad, he was there with us in Geneva for this fantastic show, and this new gesture proves he is a great Ambassador for our foundation. It is great to see that top players like him give their time or money to support projects which involve children around the planet,” said Pi Hongyan, Global Ambassador for Solibad.

Raphaël Sachetat, the founder of Solibad added: “We are very pleased and thank Lee Yong Dae for this fantastic donation. On top of the gesture, which touches us a lot, this money means a lot for us as it means we can make significant changes in the lives of the children we try to help though our projects. We will dedicate some of this money to the project in Brazil (photo), where children from a violent environment in the townships of Brazil have been put back on the right tracks and now play competitive badminton, but also it will help us to work on a project to come in Thailand as it was Lee Yong Dae’s wish – to help children which were affected by the recent flooding. As always, we will make sure that this money is carefully spent.”

SOLIBAD – www.solibad.net
The primary aim of Solibad is to raise funds with the help of the badminton community, from amateur to top professional players, and to help local projects, some of which are badminton related, and that have been chosen carefully for their sustainability.
Our pledges
100% of all funds collected will go to the projects as all of the administrative costs will be covered by our partners.
Epicureans. Solibad’s objectives will be carried out with generosity and a joyful spirit

Solibad’s Ambassadors are amongst the world’s most famous players such as Taufik Hidayat, Lee Yong Dae, Nathan Robertson, Jan O Jorgensen, Koo Kien Keat, Saina Nehwal, Rexy Mainaky, Peter Gade as a special Ambassador and many others under the Global Ambassadorship of Pi Hongyan from France. Solibad has been nominated in 2011 for the Jean Borotra Fair-Play Award by AIPS – Association Internationale de la Presse Sportive.

More information on Solibad – Badminton without Borders HERE

Raphaël Sachetat

About Raphaël Sachetat

Raphael is the Chief Editor of Badzine International. He is the founder of the website together with Jean François Chauveau. After many years writing for the BWF and many publications around the world about badminton, he now leads a team of young and dynamic writers for Badzine.