A Didier Drogba Chelsea shirt was auctioned for $7 500 in Abidjan this week to raise funds for the Salomon Kalou Foundation which has begun construction of a private hospital to treat kidney diseases.
The 29-year-old former Chelsea winger, who now plies his trade at Hertha BSC in the Bundesliga, has been working to alleviate the situation of those suffering from kidney problems in Ivory Coast, mostly the underprivileged.
He and retired footballer brother, Bonaventure, last year donated dialysis machines to several hospitals in the country, where materials to fight the disease remain inadequate, according to the country’s ministry of health.
Fellow Ivory Coast internationals Gervinho and Yaya Toure also had their jerseys auctioned, with the former Arsenal player’s shirt selling for $850 while that of reigning African Footballer of the Year went for $3 500.
Kalou personally offered $25 000 to his foundation while Drogba wrapped it up with the donation of a dialysis machine worth $50 000.
“Didier Drogba is a good person. When I arrived at Chelsea, I was just 20 years old. And we all know that at that young age earning big money could be a problem. But Drogba was always there to counsel and guide me,” Kalou said.
“Drogba is a very humble person. He has always been there for me. I owe him a lot.”