A lucky bunch of 50 schoolchildren from Drancy, in the northern Parisian suburbs, was able to spend some time with the international football player, Edouard Mendy. The member of the Senegalese national team and Chelsea goalkeeper is part of a project called PowerZ which vows to educate the young generation via a free online video game.
"I think we're in a generation where kids are very connected, but often they're poorly connected because there are a lot of cartoons, games that don't necessarily teach them anything, so this video game is a very good mix between entertainment and learning and it enriches our kids and it's something that we have to harness.", explains Edouard Mendy, Chelsea and Senegal goalkeeper.
The admired player who helped Senegal lift its first African Cup of Nations this year also financially invested in the development of PowerZ.
The Father of two young boys aged four and six also says he fell in love with its concept because it is free, or rather “free-to-pay“ as those who install it are free to pay what they want or can.
"I am very involved in this project: for me, children are the future, education is the foundation, we can link the two.", says Mendy.
PowerZ was designed by a team of 50 people including video game and pedagogy specialists. Its founder and CEO is Emmanuel Freund who praises the player's values. "I met Edouard and I realized several things: first of all we have exactly the same values, this desire to see education accessible to all, to allow everyone to educate themselves, rise in society, all of this was very important for him. And then the second thing which we see here at this event but that I saw already from the start, when we talk to the children, the fact that he is a model.".
Its designers have raised "10 million euros for the development of the game internationally". A motivation shared by the Senegalese goalkeeper who says he wishes to see PowerZ on a "world-scale".