The Isaiah and Lillian Stein Foundation was set up in 2012 by the Stein family in memory of their parents. It gained charitable status in the UK in 2012 and an application is pending as a registered non-profitable organisation in South Africa.
Isaiah and Lillian were instrumental in the struggle against apartheid in South Africa and sacrificed much for the fight for equality. In 1968, they came to the UK as political refugees yet still continued fighting for racial equality. This extended to the sporting arena, where Isaiah became a key member of the South African Non-Racial Olympic Committee (SAN-ROC).
Both parents instilled a strong sense of justice and the importance of education in their children and encouraged them to push past the boundaries of inequality and to achieve in their desires. It is testament to this drive that three of his seven sons (Mark, Brian and Edwin) became professional footballers and several have successful careers in educational or youth work settings.
The Foundation has also taken on these principles and its aim is to educate through sport in Cape Town (South Africa) and local communities in the UK seeking to provide support and assistance for young people with disadvantaged backgrounds.
One of the main objectives of the I L Stein Foundation is to raise money to build a sports and community facility at the Heatherdale Primary School in Cape Town.
In May 2013, Edwin Stein and several members of the PFA travelled to Heatherdale Primary School to run a soccer school. The boys were trained by Dave Palmer and the girls by Rachel Yankee the most capped England international player.
Edwin says “The project enabled the pupils to gain an experience that would not have been available to them under normal circumstances and empowered them to believe in themselves”.
One of the I L Stein Foundation’s other objectives is to engage with and support non-league and professional football league clubs in the UK to raise awareness and support.
The Foundation has been involved in several charity events, most recently The Friends of Africa V The Friends of the Caribbean Charity Football match at Brentford FC and The Joe Humphries Memorial Trust Charity Football Match. Mark, Edwin and Brian all played on the team.
Mark says “It was a great opportunity to support another good cause and at the same time gain support for the Heatherdale community hall project”.