Reading FC’s Madejski Stadium hosted a football tournament with a twist recently. The Hyundai Challenge Cup 2014 – the annual Hyundai dealer football tournament – was held this year to raise money for Street League, the charity which aims to change lives through football.

More importantly, the tournament provided eight young people currently participating in a Street League programme with the opportunity to win one of four four-week work placements at Hyundai’s UK headquarters in High Wycombe. 

The eight Street League participants were put through a unique interview process to determine exactly who had what it takes to work for Hyundai. President and CEO, Tony Whitehorn, and Hyundai’s human resources team conducted interviews in the team dug-outs at the side of the pitch during the tournament. 

IMPRESSED

Tony Whitehorn, CEO of Hyundai Motor UK, commented: “The slightly unconventional interviews were designed to see how the candidates performed under pressure, a very important trait when working in a fast-paced business like Hyundai. Halfway through the day we asked all eight young people to become team captains. We were looking for good team players and excellent communicators with a positive general attitude. I was seriously impressed by every single one - all have faced adversity in their lives but all are striving hard for better. That’s a lesson to us all.”

Rashaan Perrins, Shane Coulson, Sesi Hodey and Anthony Ball were the successful Street League participants, and will go on to complete work placements with Hyundai this summer.

Rashaan Perrins, commented: “I’m chuffed that I won the golden boot for scoring the most goals – I didn’t think I would but I tried really hard – and our team won overall. It was a great tournament! Winning the work experience with Hyundai though is the biggest opportunity I’ve had in my life so far.” 

DONATION

Hyundai has supported Street League since 2012, and continues to show support with a further donation in 2014 of £50,000 to fund the growth of the charity’s academies in the North West. With donations amounting to nearly £150,000 and benefit-in-kind support over the last two years, Hyundai has now become an Official Supporter of the charity.

Through the support of the Dealer and Hyundai UK participants a further £3,000 was raised during the tournament.

Street League’s CEO, Matt Stevenson-Dodd, commented, “It was a real privilege to be part of such a tremendous event with lots of great football in an amazing stadium. This partnership with Hyundai means so much - from the funds raised on the day to the involvement of our young academy participants in each dealership team. But the real winners were the young Street League participants that went through interviews to secure a four week work placement with Hyundai.” 

Watch the video of the tournament below: