Hackney Wick FC have fast established themselves as one of the most influential clubs away from the glitz and glamour of the big leagues thanks in part to their partnership with Nike. And now Nike are highlighting the club’s story from founder Bobby Kasanga’s perspective in a short film that is the first part of their new series, “From the Grounds Up.”

Five years ago, Bobby Kasanga sat in his prison cell wondering how he would change his life upon his release. He founded Hackney Wick FC with the help and support of Hackney’s residents, as a way of tackling gang violence by inspiring the young people on his childhood estate to channel their energy into the sport. “I wanted to keep the kids off the streets, keep them occupied, and give them a path,” Katanga explained.

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The club has since grown from one men’s team to nearly two dozen teams for men, women, and youth in less than five years. It has had an impact not only on Bobby’s life, but on his community, which had been marked by both gang violence and gentrification. Football can make a difference.

That’s the focus of Nike’s latest series, From the Grounds Up, which is set to profile people all over the world who know that they can change their communities and the world through football and sport. This first instalment cleverly sees Katanga addressing a youth team – and also the viewer – with his own inspiring story, encouraging all to pursue their dreams by "thinking outside the blocks".

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Stay tuned for upcoming episodes on Paris Alesia FC and Melbourne’s Fitzroy Lions.