WaterAid teams up with Wimbledon to make a racket about clean water

WaterAid and the Wimbledon Foundation took over a tennis court with a giant mosaic to highlight their campaign for clean water, just weeks before the world’s most watched tennis event begins. 

Unveiled today, the image of a young boy and his mother enjoying clean water at the All England Lawn Tennis Club, in Church Road, Wimbledon, is created entirely from tennis nets, balls and rackets.

It took a team of artists, from sustainable arts group Sand in Your Eye, with the help of the Wimbledon Junior Tennis Initiative, nine hours to create the image on one of Wimbledon’s grass tennis courts next to the iconic Centre Court. 

The artwork takes over one of Wimbledon’s grass tennis courts next to the iconic Centre Court (Picture: WaterAid/Sand In Your Eye)

The image features 18-month-old Dylan and his mother Anja, 23, from Antsakambahiny village in Madagascar, who now have clean water in their community, with the help of WaterAid and the Wimbledon Foundation.

Anja, who is a teacher, said: “As a mother, what matters most in life is Dylan and his future. 

“Water is close now, which gives me more time to be with him, to play with him and to educate him at home. Dylan doesn’t get sick as often because the water we use is clean and healthy.” 

Across the world, 703million people are living without clean water close to home, whilst almost half of hospitals, healthcare centres and doctor’s surgeries in the world’s least developed countries lack clean water, according to WaterAid.

Ashley and Caleb, from the Wimbledon Junior Tennis Initiative, helped create the giant mosaic (Picture: WaterAid/ Katie McCraw)

The Wimbledon Foundation, the charitable arm of The All England Lawn Tennis Club and The Championships, has worked with WaterAid since 2017 to provide access to clean water, decent toilets and good hygiene across Ethiopia, Nepal, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali and Myanmar. 

Bruce Weatherill, chairman of the Wimbledon Foundation, said: “Children should have the chance to play, learn and look forward to their futures, no matter where they are born. 

“But millions are being held back due to a lack of safe water and toilets – things that so many of us take for granted.”

The tennis nets and balls used for the mosaic will be donated to charities in the area supported by the Wimbledon Foundation, including the Tim Henman Foundation, Tennis For Free and Wandsworth Work and Play Scrapstore.

Pictured top: The giant mosaic made from tennis nets, balls and rackets showing 18-month-old Dylan and his mother, Anja, from Madagascar (Picture: WaterAid/ Sand In Your Eye)

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