Welsh fan’s fund for crying German girl mocked online has now raised £10,000
A fund launched by a Wales football supporter for a little German fan cruelly mocked online after England’s victory over Germany at Wembley has now hit £10,000.
Yesterday morning the total stood at £600, but thanks to the story going viral, hundreds of generous people have flooded the Just Giving page with donations.
The little girl was the subject of shameful abuse after she was pictured crying on television and on the big screen at the stadium.
Since launching his crowdfunder, Joel Hughes has so far raised more than £10,000 after initially setting a £500 target.
Now, the 51-year-old, who runs his own web development company in Pontypridd, is trying to find the girl’s family so he can hand over the money “to show this little German supporter that not everyone in the UK is horrible.”
“I’ve been blown away by the response,” he says. “Many people seem to get that this is a lot more than just about a girl crying.
“This is about empathy and about taking a stand against the negativity out there.”
The search continues for the little girl’s family with newspapers in the UK and Germany running the story.
“It’s all been very positive and there has been lots of interest, but if we don’t find the parents, or they don’t want to come forward, we will donate the money to a good cause most closely aligned with the spirit of the campaign,” says Joel.
Joel started the crowdfunder after a tweet from former football turned pundit, Stan Collymore.
“I saw his tweet highlighting the abuse the little girl was getting,” he says. “I can’t stand seeing that kind of bullying online.
“I think this kind of xenophobia is worse since Brexit. And almost encouraged by the UK Government.
“So I thought I would try to do something. A small thing. Not something that would change the world, or change the minds of those who wrote nasty stuff about the little girl. But something none the less.
“And if it means we can put a smile on that girl’s face, then job done.”
Joel says he was amazed at how quickly donations came flooding in.
“I was surprised to hit the target quickly, but it goes to show how much goodwill is out there,” he said. “And part of this is demonstrating that there is goodwill out there – as negativity seems to dominate the airwaves.”
Now comes the tricky bit – tracking down the little German fan and her family.
“At the moment I’m just tweeting as much as I can,” says Joel. “Hopefully with a big push online we will be able to try and find her.”
If you would like to donate to the fund click the link HERE
If you know how to contact the German girl’s family drop Joel a line via Twitter