Activity report 2022/23

Activity report 2022/23

Dear Friends,

It is often said that our shared strength, kindness and bravery are most evident during challenging times. Unfortunately, the past year has been marked by a series of devastating events, putting humanity to the ultimate test, and we find ourselves still navigating through uncertain times.

The conflict between Russia and Ukraine continues unabated, and a newly distressing situation has emerged in the Middle East, where millions of civilians and children are suffering the repercussions. Additionally, we must not forget the tragic loss of 50,000 lives in the catastrophic earthquake that struck Türkiye and Syria last February, with many more injured and displaced from their homes, still dealing with the aftermath.

During this turbulent period, the UEFA Foundation for Children remains unwavering in its commitment to helping the most vulnerable, with a particular emphasis on young children and girls, refugees and internally displaced people.

We are all familiar with stories that underscore football’s profound influence on people’s lives. However, this report sheds light on an often-overlooked aspect, which deserves more recognition: our beloved sport inspires millions of children worldwide, nurturing their dreams and aspirations for a more promising future, in a world where every child is acknowledged and respected.

This activity report outlines various projects undertaken in 2022/23, showcasing the tangible positive impact on children's lives globally. I would like to express my sincere gratitude to our partners for their exceptional efforts, and for the love, care and respect they have shown to the generations of tomorrow.

Access to the online report.




Solidarity trip to Sri Lanka, September–October 2023

Solidarity trip to Sri Lanka, September–October 2023

The UEFA Foundation for Children and UEFA’s HR team organised the fourth solidarity trip, this time to Sri Lanka.

In September, the UEFA Foundation for Children and UEFA’s HR team organised a fourth solidarity trip, this time to Sri Lanka. Six members of UEFA staff took time out of their busy lives to take part in the project and help renovate a primary school in Karagoda Uyangoda, a remote village in the jungle of Matara district, in the south of the island.

The aim of these trips is to offer a different kind of travel experience that involves engaging with and helping local communities. The organisation Unis Vers le Sport identified the project and organised host families in the village.


Our brief was to renovate the local school. We painted the inside walls of four classrooms and some of the outside walls. We had also planned to distribute surplus sports equipment from UEFA competitions and school supplies purchased in Sri Lanka. We were hoping to spend time with the schoolchildren too, and do sports activities and handicrafts with them.

Unfortunately, the weather did not play ball. The rainy season was unusually long and the school was closed when we arrived. We remained hopeful, however, and set to work paining the first classrooms.

We stayed with families in the village, with whom we shared breakfast, lunch and dinner. Our hosts were very welcoming. We also experienced life in the rainforest, seeing peacocks, monkeys and monitor lizards and hearing all sorts of other wild animals, especially at night. It was an incredible change of scenery and would have been perfect if had not been for the incessant rain, which flooded the area and cut off the village.

In the end, we decided to leave earlier than planned, without having met the schoolchildren. Morale was low that day, with a sense that we were abandoning our hosts without finishing the job. Since the village was surrounded by water, the Sri Lankan navy came to pick us up. The villagers accompanied us to the boat. It was a heartbreaking departure.

We relocated to Mirissa, a small town on the Indian Ocean. From there, we followed the coast up as far as Galle, where we visited Buddhist temples and the fortified old town that bears witness to the country’s colonial past.

For Paulo, one of the founders of Unis Vers le Sport, this was a solidarity trip like no other.

Our small team was fantastic and stuck together despite the challenges we faced, which seemed extreme to us but were nothing out of the ordinary for the locals. In the end, it was a many very positive personal and human experience that will remain etched in our memories.

Another team will finish renovating the little primary school in Karagoda Uyangoda in February, and who knows, perhaps some of our group will also return to meet the children and distribute materials on behalf of the foundation.



64 projects receive grants from the UEFA Foundation for Children

64 projects receive grants from the UEFA Foundation for Children

A total of €4.5m will benefit children in need all over the world.>

he UEFA Foundation for Children board of trustees held its twice yearly meeting at UEFA headquarters last Wednesday. Chaired by Aleksander Čeferin, it decided to allocate funding to 64 projects, as part of the foundation’s mission to defend vulnerable children’s rights around the world so that they can look forward to a better future.

Most projects use sport, and in particular football, to address topics such as access to sports and recreation, physical and mental health, education, integration and many other societal issues.

In accordance with the board’s decision, half of the budget is allocated to European projects (28) and the other half to projects in the rest of the world (36).

Andrea Radrizzani, UEFA Foundation for Children board member said:

“The UEFA Foundation has selected 64 projects to support NGOs across 71 countries, all of them are aligned with our vision to empower children’s education, and gender equality and inspire new generations through the power of football.”


List of NGOs selected from the 2023 call for project.


Partner Countries
Save the Children Albania Albania
NGO Bridge of Hope Armenia
Kicken ohne Grenzen Austria
Children’s Football Alliance Belgium, Italy, Northern Ireland, Scotland, Switzerland
Royal Europa '90 Kraainem Football Club Belgium
OFK BIHAC Bosnia and Herzegovina
Association for Sport, Recreation and Education – Youth Games Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Serbia
Children of Prisoners Europe Europe
Bibliothèques Sans Frontières France
Spirit of Football e.V. Germany
Orama Neon YOUTHORAMA NGO Greece
Oltalom Sport Association Hungary
Amigos for Children Foundation Hungary
The Icelandic Youth Association Iceland
A New Way Israel
Calciosociale ssdrl Italy
KFV Prishtina Kosovo
Vilnius social club Lithuania
NGO Parents Montenegro
Stichting Het Gehandicapte Kind Netherlands
Stowarzyszenie Trenuj Bycie Dobrym Poland
United Way Romania Romania
Development Center for Youth Serbia
Fundación Grandes Valores (Fútbal Más Foundation) Spain
Bonyan Organization Turkey and Syria
Big Hearts Community Trust United Kingdom
Klitschko Foundation Ukraine
Around Football Ukraine
Malaika Democratic Republic of Congo
Terre des Hommes, Egypt Egypt
Power for the People Kenya
Mathare Youth Sports Association Kenya
Association TIBU Maroc Morocco
Cross Cultures Project Association Nigeria
AKA (Association Kenskoazell Afrika) Senegal
Samusocial International Senegal
AMANDLA Ku Lutsha T/A AMANDLA Social Enterprises South Africa
Karibu Tanzania Organization Tanzania
Fondation Khuon Zimbabwe
All In: Girls Play Pacific Islands
Action for Development Afghanistan
Canadian Women for Women in Afghanistan Afghanistan
SALT Academy Cambodia
Plan International Hong Kong China
Krida Vikas Sanstha (SlumSoccer) India
ASA Foundation Indonesia
Association Football Development Programme Global Jordan
Tawazon Initiative for Development Lebanon
University of Milano-Bicocca – MaRHE Center Maldives
Atoot Nepal
Palestine: Sports for Life Palestine
FundLife International Philippines
Help Without Frontiers Thailand
The Football Association of Norway/Football for All in Vietnam (NFF/FFAV) Vietnam
Medair Yemen
GOLEES Foundation Costa Rica
Johan Cruyff Foundation Curaçao
Asociación de Maestros de Educación Temprana Plantando Semillas Guatemala
Educate Honduras
Asociacion Civil Andar Argentina
love.fútbol Brasil Brazil
WAPA International Colombia
Scort Foundation Ecuador
NGO Mama Alice Peru


The next board meeting will be held in Athens on Wednesday 29 May.

The next call for project is scheduled for June/July 2024.

The UEFA Foundation has selected 64 projects to support NGOs across 71 countries, all of them are aligned with our vision to empower children’s education, gender equality and inspire new generations through the power of football.”

- Andrea Radrizzani, UEFA Foundation for children board member

Board of Trustees starts a new four-year term.

Board of Trustees starts a new four-year term

Long-serving member Peter Gilliéron is succeeded by Dominique Blanc<

The UEFA Foundation for Children has officially confirmed its new Board of Trustees for the upcoming cycle, marking the institution's commitment to its mission, which grows in importance by the day. The new board was elected for a four-year term at today's assembly.

“In these challenging times, the need to support and uplift our children is more pressing than ever. And football is a great platform to do that. United around our beautiful game, we navigate these uncertainties, determined to craft a brighter, more hopeful future for every child in need,” said Aleksander Čeferin, UEFA president and board chairman.

2023–27 Board of Trustees

Aleksander Čeferin – chairman

Andrea Radrizzani

Clarence Seedorf

Dominique Blanc

Fiona May

Kairat Boranbayev

Kevin Lamour

Margarita Louis-Dreyfus

Nathalie Iannetta

Norman Darmanin Demajo

Snežana Samardžić-Marković

Wladimir Klitschko

The board’s primary role is in shaping overarching strategies and endorsing projects worldwide that align with the foundation's objectives, with a commitment to prioritising the rights and well-being of children through the power of football.

The assembly also acknowledged the departure of Peter Gilliéron, one of the foundation's founding members. On behalf of the board, the chairman expressed his appreciation for Gilliéron's invaluable advice and enduring commitment to the foundation over the years.

Dominique Blanc, the president of the Swiss Football Association, emerged as the unanimous choice to fill the vacant seat. His extensive experience in football, spanning roles as a player, referee, and official in grassroots football, brings invaluable experience to the new position.

“I look forward with great pleasure and conviction to contributing to the foundation’s work and learning from your experience,” said Blanc after the election.

As the foundation continues its mission to uplift the lives of underprivileged children, its board members' collective expertise and passion promise a positive and impactful journey ahead.

In these challenging times, the need to support and uplift our children is more pressing than ever. And football is a great platform to do that. United around our beautiful game, we navigate these uncertainties, determined to craft a brighter, more hopeful future for every child in need."

- Aleksander Čeferin, UEFA president and board chairman.

Diogo Costa’s UCL record converted into solidarity action

Diogo Costa’s UEFA Champions League record converted into solidarity action

The UEFA Foundation for Children supports goalkeeper's initiative by sending football kits and 120 balls to organisations close to the player’s heart.

Last season, Diogo Costa set the record for the highest number of penalties saved in a row in a single group phase of the UEFA Champions League. He pledged to convert the three consecutive saved penalties into three solidarity initiatives supported by FC Porto and the UEFA Foundation for Children.

The Dragons’ goalkeeper donated football kits to AMCH Ringe, the first club he played for, and FC Porto’s youth disabled football team. He is also supporting APORMast, the Portuguese Association of Patients with Mastocytosis and Mast Cell Diseases.

Children from Ringe and FC Porto were invited to the Estádio do Dragão for a dedicated workshop organised by Diogo, who taught them how to kick and how to stop penalties. It was a privileged and inspiring moment for the kids: for many of them meeting Diogo Costa was a dream come true and it will reinforce their motivation and commitment to progress in football.

“I have great memories of playing for Ringe,” Diogo Costa recalls. “It’s motivating for me to represent Ringe as a former graduate while doing my best for FC Porto. I hope my story will inspire them in some way.”

Diogo Costa’s third initiative is designed to draw attention to the Portuguese Association of Mastocytoses and Mastocytoses (APORTMast). He became aware of this non-profit association through his former physical education teacher, Sónia Carvalho, who was very dear to him. She was recently diagnosed with mast cell disease and discovered that it is a rare disease that is very difficult to identify. In addition, medicines that greatly improve the quality of life of sufferers are not reimbursed.

Link to UEFA TV Show, featuring the three solidarity actions.

FC Porto launched an auction on Friday to support this cause, and the items up for grabs are a jersey signed by Diogo, two tickets for the FC Porto–FC Shakhtar Donetsk Champions League match scheduled to take place at 20:00 on 13 December at the Estádio do Dragao, and a chance to meet Diogo Costa after the match.

The sale ends at noon on Thursday 7 December, and all profits will go to APORMast.

Link to the auction.


I have great memories of playing for Ringe. It’s motivating for me to represent Ringe as a former graduate while doing my best for FC Porto. I hope my story will inspire them in some way.

- Diogo Costa, FC Porto Goalkeeper

New sustainable Lay’s RePlay pitch opens in Italy.

New sustainable Lay's RePlay pitch opens in Italy.

In Naples, the UEFA Foundation, Common Goal, and Lay's unite to promote sport, inclusion and sustainability.

From Packs to Pitches: the UEFA Foundation for Children, Common Goal and Lay's proudly unveiled a new sustainable football pitch today in the heart of Naples, open to the local community and local sports associations.

The inauguration of the new sustainable pitch, made using recycled bags of crisp packets, was the perfect occasion to celebrate sport, inclusion and sustainability, and supports the recent development of the city's Scampia neighbourhood.

The ribbon cutting ceremony was attended by a number of special guests to mark the occasion including Naples mayor Gaetano Manfredi and former Italian international and UEFA Champions League winner Ciro Ferrara, with a performance by singer-songwriter Dadà.

The Scampia district was chosen for this initiative to support its recent redevelopment launched as a series of initiatives promoted by Municipality 8 and local associations to address issues such as unemployment, poverty and inequalities.

Urs Kluser, General Secretary of the UEFA Foundation for Children:

“The Lay's RePlay programme is not just about creating football facilities - it's about empowering communities, promoting inclusivity and championing environmental sustainability. This initiative represents a powerful example of how sport can be a catalyst for positive change on a global scale, and we're proud to be part of this journey."


The Lay's RePlay programme has successfully led to the creation of football facilities in South Africa, the United Kingdom, Brazil, Mexico, Egypt, the United States and Italy. In the latter, the first pitch was inaugurated in the Cecchi Point district of Turin in May 2022. Since its launch, the Turin pitch has been used over 20,000 times, provided 1,225 hours of sport activities and life skills training and 213 hours of events and special activities for the community.

Providing everyone with access to the joy of sport is a long-standing goal of Lay's RePlay - this project embodies the transformation, moving from reusing empty packs of chip packages to creating football fields donated to local communities. The goal is to combine the passion for sport, social inclusion and environmental protection to promote a positive impact on a global scale.

- Marcello Pincelli, PepsiCo Italia General Manager

Álex Remiro shares his experience on World Mental Health Day

Álex Remiro shares his experience on World Mental Health Day

The Real Sociedad goalkeeper celebrates the start of the new Champions League season by putting his football know-how and leadership to use for social change.

Ahead of World Mental Health Day, we met with Álex Remiro, a new Friend of the UEFA Foundation for Children, to talk about the importance of psychological well-being at a time when more and more people, particularly children, suffer from mental health problems.

How can sport, and football, help to overcome psychological or mental illness?

I think all sports can and it's even more true with football because it's followed by a lot of people. It helps you maintain good physical health of course, but it also provides much more.

Football allows you to get to know people, it allows you to solve problems together, it allows you to learn how to be a good person in the dressing room. When you wear your club jersey, you represent a city and its values. This gives you a responsibility but also a lot of pride.

How do you prepare mentally before a game?

I try to give my best every week, Monday to Friday. Be really motivated. If everything goes well, I know I will be ready for the match without any thoughts or problems on my mind.

After each match, I relax and prepare to face the next team, learning about their strengths, their way of playing, and the players who might or might not be there. It's about knowing and being realistic about the pressure of the match.

I've been working on my mental health for nine years with my sports psychologist.

In the beginning, I didn't feel confident, I didn't want to go to training, and I didn't feel good in my club. Then my psychologist told me: “Look at it differently: it's not about problems with the club, it's not about problems with the manager, it's not about problems with your family. You should focus on what you really want. If you want to train and play, just focus on training and then you'll play.”

Do you have any advice for young people who might be under pressure or harassed or who might feel like they are in a critical situation?

One piece of advice I always repeat is to be realistic and know your expectations. It's different if you play for fun than if you play professionally. Sometimes we put more pressure on ourselves than necessary. Football is a sport and sport is about having fun. Some children and families forget this.

So, the advice I would give would be to focus on training, be the best friend you can be and respect your club and your coaches. When matchday comes, the important thing is the team; the result of the match does not define your life.


Alex’s commitment to grassroots football

In March 2023, the Navarrese goalkeeper launched his own project in cooperation with the foundation’s partner Fútbol Más. It aims to give children who play football and their families the knowledge and tools needed to ensure their emotional well-being, resilience and mental health.

This project involves 50 out of the 96 football clubs in Gipuzkoa, Basque Country, reaching 2,500 boys and girls and 1,250 families. The objective is to bring the rest of the clubs on board in the coming year.

“This theme is particularly close to my heart because I was very affected by insults and people who lack respect for referees, managers or players. I felt like it was a real problem. Children are not equipped to face these situations. This is what made me commit to this programme. Through a team of sports psychologists, we provide tools to help them better manage these situations. It's about protecting our children and grassroots football.”


Football is about more than scoring goals

“I always liked helping children,” Remiro says. “Kids follow their idols; they listen to their words. I had the opportunity to meet big players when I was young, and that inspired me to follow my path. It’s very important for me to help kids have a better attitude on the pitch, at home or at school. Kids are like sponges: they take on everything, good and bad, so we must make sure we give them good things.”

“UEFA’s values are the same as those that I defend in my project. In sports as in life, you don't win at any cost. There are values and rules to follow, such as respect and fair play. In my project, all these values are part of the training that we offer.”

We welcome Alex's excellent initiative on mental health and look forward to collaborating on more projects in the future.

I always liked helping children. Kids follow their idols; they listen to their words. I had the opportunity to meet big players when I was young, and that inspired me to follow my path. It’s very important for me to help kids have a better attitude on the pitch, at home or at school. Kids are like sponges: they take on everything, good and bad, so we must make sure we give them good things.”

- Álex Remiro, Friend of UEFA Foundation for Children

TACKLE Racism in Grassroots Football: UEFA Foundation leads the way

TACKLE Racism in Grassroots Football: UEFA Foundation leads the way 

"TACKLE Racism in Grassroots Football," with the objective of combating racism, discrimination, and intolerance within the sport.

Embracing a three-year journey supported by the EU Erasmus+ programme, the UEFA Foundation for Children warmly welcomed the TACKLE conference at UEFA in Nyon. The event aimed to champion inclusivity and tackle racism in non-professional football. By specifically focusing on coaches and managers in grassroots football clubs, the project raises awareness, fosters competence, and develops strategies to eradicate racism from the beautiful game. With a comprehensive approach at its core, this inspiring initiative aspires to create a lasting impact on players, grassroots football, and the wider sporting community. 

Promoting inclusion in football is to be placed at the top of the priority list of big organisations. This is the start of the fundamental change; it means acknowledging where we are today and what we want to achieve. Actions and implementations will be much easier. 

-Clarence Seedorf, board member of UEFA Foundation for Children 

It was important for the Foundation to be part of this project in collaboration with the European Commission. We all know about discrimination and the existence of abuses in football. It is great to be able to rely on scientifical research to come up with responses in promoting inclusion in our beautiful sport. 

-Urs Kluser, general secretary of UEFA Foundation for Children 

The project uses a comprehensive multidimensional approach based on five axes:

1. Enhancing awareness and competences

One of the core objectives of the TACKLE initiative is to empower football coaches and managers operating in grassroots football to proactively manage and prevent racism, xenophobia, and other forms of intolerance. By providing them with the necessary knowledge and skills, the project aims to equip these individuals with the tools to effectively address and eradicate racist behaviours within their clubs. Through workshops, seminars, and interactive training sessions, participants can enhance their awareness and competencies in dealing with these critical issues.

2. Prevention and mitigation of racism incidents

The TACKLE project also recognises the importance of prevention and a proactive approach when it comes to anti-racism measures. To achieve this, extensive research was conducted to examine and analyse the current realities, challenges, and gaps related to the presence of racist behaviours and incidents. The findings were used to identify effective approaches and policies that could be implemented to address the issue at its core. By adopting a proactive stance, the project aims to create a safe and inclusive environment for all participants, promoting equal opportunities and fostering respect and understanding among diverse communities.

3. The TACKLE Toolkit

The TACKLE toolkit consists of best practices to tackle racism specifically within the context of youth and amateur football. It serves as a guide for coaches, managers, and stakeholders, offering practical strategies and actionable steps to address and prevent racist incidents effectively. By promoting the widespread adoption of these best practices, the TACKLE project aims to create a collective effort to combat racism, fostering a more inclusive and harmonious grassroots football community.

4. E-Learning Platform and Curriculum

Providing information and resources to tackle racism and abuse is key. Therefore, an e-learning platform is available to all and provides instant access to the project's full suite of materials and digital learning resources. Coaches, managers, and interested individuals can access the curriculum, which is specially designed to cater to the needs of grassroots football. Through interactive modules, quizzes, and multimedia content, learners can deepen their understanding of racism in football and acquire practical skills to tackle the issue effectively. The e-learning platform serves as a centralised space for information, promoting continuous learning and knowledge sharing among stakeholders.

5. Partnerships and cooperation

The TACKLE project's impact extends beyond national borders through the organisation of multiple events in participating countries. These events bring together key stakeholders, including coaches, managers, football associations, and community leaders, to raise awareness about the severe impact of racism on players, grassroots football, and sports in general. By fostering dialogue, knowledge exchange, and collaboration, the TACKLE initiative aims to create a network of like-minded individuals and organisations dedicated to eradicating racism from football.

Led by the Centre for the Advancement of Research and Development in Educational Technology (CARDET), the project consortium includes NGO KMOP, the Irish Spectrum Research Centre, the FARE network, the University of Pitesti in Romania, the Institute of Development in Cyprus, and the UEFA Foundation for Children. This collaboration ensures a multidisciplinary and holistic approach in addressing racism, discrimination, and intolerance in grassroots football.

Nyon, Switzerland - June 23rd: Tackle Conference - Tackling Racism and Discrimination in Football, at the UEFA Headquarters, The House of the European Football, on June 23rd 2023. (Photo by Kristian Skeie - UEFA/UEFA via Getty Images)

This project has been funded with support from the European Commission (Erasmus+ Project Number: 622561-EPP-1-2020-1-CY-SPO-SCP).

UEFA Foundation brings hope to Champions League final in earthquake-hit Türkiye

UEFA Foundation brings hope to Champions League final in earthquake-hit Türkiye.

The UEFA Foundation for Children and Turkish NGO Bonyan Organization create a memorable experience for more than 40 children at the UEFA Champions League final in Istanbul.

More than 40 children sampled the unforgettable magic of the UEFA Champions League final on Saturday thanks to the UEFA Foundation and Turkish NGO, Bonyan Organization.

All of them are part of communities affected by February’s devastating earthquakes which hit south-east Türkiye and Syria and were able to enjoy much-needed respite from the on-going recovery situation by taking in Manchester City’s 1-0 win over Inter at the Atatürk Olympic Stadium in Istanbul.

The children are affiliated to the Bonyan Organization, an independent, non-governmental, and non-profit organisation dedicated to building human capacity and rehabilitating war-torn communities across the Middle East. Thanks to the invaluable support of the UEFA Foundation for Children, these young individuals were granted an extraordinary opportunity to witness the thrilling action first-hand. Some were even fortunate enough to accompany the players into the stadium before the game as match escorts.

Mohammed, player mascot

"I was really happy to watch the match and meet Haaland! I got very excited because Manchester City won."

The excitement began on Friday when an incredible surprise awaited them with the opportunity to take in the teams’ final training sessions at the stadium. Players from both Inter and City took the time to personally greet their young fans, leaving them astounded yet brimming with happiness. Notable heroes Hakan Çalhanoğlu and İlkay Gündoğan spent time talking to the children and signing autographs before the kids had their last surprise of the day as they came face to face with the Champions League trophy.

Marwa, player mascot

"It was a great feeling when I interacted with the referees and got very close to the trophy, holding the ball that Manchester City and Inter played with.

It was a dream of mine and I didn't expect to have such an opportunity. It was a sweet and special feeling, especially when I attended the team's celebrations."

Since 2015, the UEFA Foundation for Children has been committed to making a positive impact on the lives of young people through the beautiful game. Its unwavering support for the Bonyan Organization and their active involvement in the Champions League final showcased its dedication to using football as a powerful force for good.

The Foundation supports Bonyan Organization’s “Goal-4-all” project with a funding of €200,000. The project's primary objective is to promote peaceful coexistence among children from diverse communities, including refugees and host communities, using sports as a tool for integration. Through this initiative, Turkish and Syrian children gain regular access to sports facilities, while special emphasis is placed on creating opportunities for the integration of girls and children with special needs.

Tarek Alfaraj, programme manager at Bonyan Organization

"We express our sincere gratitude to FedEx Express and UEFA Foundation for Children for their invaluable partnership in the aftermath of the devastating earthquake in Türkiye and Syria. Together, we have provided essential aid, raised awareness, and showcased the crucial work of Bonyan Organization. This collaboration strengthens our resolve to serve communities in need. Thank you for your unwavering commitment to social responsibility and making a positive impact on people's lives."


More about Bonyan's project.

Special Earthquake fund

Supported by UEFA and its partners, the UEFA Foundation for Children is calling for donations to provide significant support for the people affected by the earthquakes, particularly children.

The funds will be distributed to various partners active in communities affected by the earthquakes. These partners not only provide mental health support to children through initiatives linked to football, but also aid in the rehabilitation and integration of children seriously injured by the earthquakes.

UEFA Foundation making dreams comes true at Prague final

UEFA Foundation making dreams comes true at Prague final

Over 50 children beneficiaries from Czechia's Fotbal pro rozvoj project took part in Europa Conference League final thanks to the UEFA Foundation for Children.

With the UEFA Europa Conference League Final unfolding in Prague, the spotlight shone not only on the thrilling football action but also on the remarkable work achieved by the UEFA Foundation for children through the Fotbal pro rozvoj (Football for development) project in Czechia.

Over 50 young beneficiaries of the initiative enjoyed a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to witness the grand spectacle of this year's final at Prague's Eden Arena thanks to the joint work of the foundation and two of the competition’s sponsors, Hankook and Engelbert Strauss.

Adding to the excitement, a small group of children took centre stage, striding onto the pitch as referee and player mascots, proudly standing shoulder to shoulder with the Fiorentina and West Ham United players. This honour exemplifies the unwavering spirit and limitless potential residing within each child, echoing the Foundation's belief that "Every child is a champion."

It was my dream to enter the pitch in a full stadium

-Young Karolina had the chance to act as a player mascot for the first time

Since 2020, the foundation has been supporting the Fotbal pro rozvoj project in Czechia, which uses informal football-based educational activities to engage young people at risk of social exclusion. Through the power of sport, the initiative promotes social integration, personal development, and a sense of belonging for the youth in various urban environments across the country.

Football for Development has been running in Czechia for over 15 years, during which it has developed a robust network of national and international partners. Collaborating with clubs, social services, orphanages, and youth detention centres in the cities of Prague, Usti nad Labem, Plzeň, Olomouc, Karlovy Vary and Liberec, the project creates safe spaces for social interaction and personal growth for children and teenagers from disadvantaged backgrounds, including those at risk of social exclusion, discrimination, disabilities, and orphanhood.

Football for Development implements the Football3 concept, which prioritises fair play, inclusion, and mutual respect as essential elements of the game. By emphasising social values such as teamwork, discussion, and mutual understanding, the initiative goes beyond sports competition to instil life skills and conflict resolution strategies.

The initiative also employs the Football for Good methodology, integrating football training sessions with social topics and life skills relevant to participants' daily lives. From addressing issues like drug abuse, violence, vandalism, and racism to teaching communication, teamwork, respect, leadership skills, and non-violent conflict resolution, this approach empowers young people to become responsible leaders within their communities.

Prague welcomes and celebrates the achievement of two teams at the Europa Conference League final, but not only. Thanks to the UEFA Foundation for Children and its partners, it will also celebrate the achievement of a number of young people who take part in our Football for Good programme and bring them this unique experience. We are glad our children can contribute to the diversity and celebration of the European Conference League final.

Ansley, Fotbal pro rozvoj manager


Read more about the project


Youth League finalists unite to give back to local community.

Youth League finalists unite to give back to local community

Ahead of Monday’s final, young players from Hajduk Split and AZ Alkmaar participated in the UEFA Foundation for Children's inspiring social programme initiative by training with local children with disabilities.

Over the weekend leading up to the UEFA Youth League final between Croatia's Hajduk Split and the Netherlands' AZ Alkmaar, UEFA and the UEFA Foundation for Children extended a special invitation to local associations Seven Association and SRD Young Stars to join the finalists for an exclusive training session.

Twenty-two young players with learning disabilities had the chance to train alongside emerging talents and future top players on UEFA’s home pitch in Nyon, Switzerland. After warming up together with different exercises and games where they practised their passing, shooting and technical skills, they then played a series of fun and intense games. It was a heart-warming sight as the teams put aside their rivalry and came together to share a moment of fun and camaraderie on the field.

The Youth League donates a portion of its revenue to the UEFA Foundation for Children to help fund social projects and associations, including the Seven Association. This initiative serves as a meaningful way to give back to the local community and offer support to young players with disabilities. The experience was truly special, and everyone involved thoroughly enjoyed it.

"It was a very special day for our team. We were really impressed to see the level of play of the players from both teams. We enjoyed the hospitality and thank the UEFA foundation for inviting us. We hope to come back next year."

- Naom Jafer, SRD Young Stars captain

UEFA Foundation at the Youth League

The UEFA Foundation for Children also made an inspiring show of solidarity by setting up a vibrant stand at the fan zone outside the Stade de Genève. The foundation brought its mission to life through an array of engaging games and activities designed to showcase its tireless efforts to support children's development worldwide.

The foundation also invited children from the Rêves (Dreams) association in Switzerland to attend the exhilarating Youth League semi-finals and play fun games at its stand in the fan zone to win awesome prizes and even meet the beloved Youth League mascot, Yuli!


Eleven new projects by ECA member clubs supported following the second round of the ECA’s relief programme.

Eleven new projects by ECA member clubs supported following the second round of the ECA’s relief programme


Following a second call for proposals, the ECA Relief Committee has approved applications for financial assistance from ten clubs to support 11 new projects designed to assist children and families displaced by the ongoing humanitarian crisis in Ukraine.

The approved projects have been passed to the UEFA Foundation for Children for final approval and transfer of the funds granted, up to a maximum of €25,000 per club per proposed project. The total amount granted to the new round of projects comes to around €250,000, meaning that a grand total of €930,000 has now been allocated out of the original €1m ECA Relief Fund.

Commenting on the allocation of funds to the clubs, Dariusz Mioduski, ECA Vice-Chairman and Chairman of the ECA Relief Committee, said:

“At ECA, we are all engaged in assisting clubs and allowing them to continue their excellent work in supporting Ukrainian children and families displaced by this tragic war. I am very pleased, therefore, that our ECA Relief Committee was able to approve another 11 projects, making a total of 26 projects that have received financial donations.

“The more projects and clubs ECA supports through this programme, the more children and families we help in these difficult times.”

The ECA Relief Committee was set up to receive and review applications from clubs that are implementing concrete and effective humanitarian initiatives to support the integration and development of those affected by the war in Ukraine.

ECA Chairman Nasser Al-Khelaïfi announced that an ECA Relief Fund of €1m would be made available to clubs for projects relating to the Ukrainian humanitarian crisis during his opening speech at the ECA General Assembly in Vienna in March last year.

In the first round of proposals in August 2022, the ECA Relief Committee approved 15 projects, committing €680,000 of financial assistance to humanitarian projects helping Ukrainian refugees.

The clubs whose projects were approved in the second round are Legia (Poland), Kalju (Estonia), SJK Seinãjoki (Finland), Shakhtar Donetsk (Ukraine), Liberec (Czechia), Sporting CP (Portugal), Trenčín (Slovakia), NK Veres Rivne (Ukraine), Wisła Kraków (Poland) and Zimbru (Moldova).




Dear Friends,

The period covered in this report is accompanied by great sadness. The fear, uncertainty and frustration we all experienced during what seemed like an endless pandemic were taken to another level when the war broke out in the heart of Europe, in a senseless act that has affected millions of children and their families. I cannot even imagine how this horror may look to children's eyes.

But this report also brings hope, reflecting humanity’s ability to win even in the most challenging times. I am genuinely proud of the reaction from the European football community, which, with our foundation’s support, quickly mobilised to provide emergency relief to civilians affected by the conflict in Ukraine. Countless tons of humanitarian aid from Hungary, Moldova, Poland, Romania and Slovakia have reached thousands of people in need, with football associations and clubs leading by their shining example.

During this time, our foundation continued supporting the best projects and using the power of football to improve the lives of millions of at-risk children and teenagers all over the world. Thanks to generous contributions from UEFA's sponsors and partners, we were able to help many youngsters growing up under challenging circumstances – children in detention or forced to work, child victims of land mines, and children living in less tolerant surroundings. Together, we will carry on protecting children’s right to childhood while using football as a catalyst for personal development, social equality and cohesion.

I am also very proud that more than 450 project beneficiaries were given a chance to attend our competition finals, with many of them stepping out onto the pitch with players and referees. So, what might look like a short walk to some, was a unique adventure for these children, creating a lifetime bond with our beautiful sport.

Please, pay heed to these testimonies. They will tell you a story of joy, love and hope that football brings to their lives. They also give us the strength and determination to keep fighting for them. The UEFA Foundation for Children, dear friends, is grateful for your support.

Activity report 2021-22

UEFA Foundation for Children

Aleksander Čeferin



  1. Calciosociale (Italy)
  2. InterSOS (Lebanon)
  3. Fundación River Plate (Argentina)
  4. Unis vers le Sport (Mali)

Visa donates €50,000 to UEFA Foundation-backed charity selected by Amandine Henry

Visa donates €50,000 to UEFA Foundation-backed charity selected by Amandine Henry

The Player of the Match in the 2021/22 UEFA Women’s Champions League final has selected Sport dans la Ville to receive a €50,000 donation from Visa.

Olympique Lyonnais (OL) midfielder Amandine Henry has directed a €50,000 donation from Visa to Sport dans la Ville, a French charity supported by the UEFA Foundation for Children. An official award ceremony will be organised the 14th of September, on the OL campus in the presence of the association Sport dans la Ville.

Henry paved the way to OL’s 3-1 victory over FC Barcelona in the UEFA Women’s Champions League final back in May when she scored the first goal of the game in the sixth minute. Named Player of the Match by Visa, which sponsors UEFA’s women’s football competitions, she was given the opportunity to choose one of the 245 charities supported by the UEFA Foundation for Children to receive the prize money.


Making a difference on and off the pitch

"I am very happy to have been awarded Player of the Match at the UEFA Women’s Champions League final," Henry said. "My contribution to my team's victory has been recognised, which gives me real satisfaction, but I am also delighted to be able to contribute off the pitch."

"Thanks to Visa's commitment, I was able to choose an organisation that I hold in high regard. Sport dans la Ville does great work in Lyon and throughout France. Giving them such a significant donation will improve the conditions of access to sport for many young people. Considering what sport has enabled me to achieve, it means a lot to me."

Sport dans la Ville, a long-standing partner of the UEFA Foundation, works with young and disadvantaged children in marginalised neighbourhoods across France to help them achieve a better life through sports by offering mentoring and entrepreneurship programmes. Founded in 1998, the charity currently operates in 46 urban areas and has supported more than 12,000 at-risk youths across the country.

Visa is also partnering with Sport dans la Ville in underserved areas of Seine-Saint-Denis on a programme promoting the practice of sports among young people to lead healthier lives and develop the tools they need to perform better academically.


Sports and football to empower girls

Urs Kluser, General Secretary of the UEFA Foundation for Children, is delighted with Visa’s contribution, saying: “I thank VISA and Amandine for this donation. It is a nice link between women’s football and the foundation’s activity. It will not only make a difference to a meaningful project but will also promote our shared values, such as the passion for the game and equal opportunities.”

The UEFA Foundation for Children uses football as a springboard to empower children around the world. This is achieved by setting up sporting and educational projects that give children a safe place to learn and play, which ultimately improves their prospects.

"I want to thank Visa and Amandine on behalf of the entire Sport dans la Ville association for this very generous donation," said Nicholas Eschermann, president of Sport dans la Ville. "Visa is a trusted partner and we are very happy to have been able to count on their support for several years now."


Visa dedicated to women's football

“Visa's ongoing support for women's football provides a platform to recognise current athletes and inspire future ones and aims to make a small yet robust contribution to the globally growing movement for gender equality and women's empowerment. As partners of Sport dans la Ville, we are especially happy to see that they will receive this donation enabling them to keep supporting children through sports,” says Juan Herrera, Visa’s head of marketing for France, Belgium and Luxembourg.

In December 2018, UEFA announced a landmark seven-year partnership with Visa, who thus became the first ever UEFA sponsor dedicated to women's football.

The landmark agreement made Visa a main partner of the UEFA Women's Champions League, UEFA Women's EURO, European Women's Under-19 and Under-17 Championships and UEFA Women's Futsal EURO until 2025. Visa also collaborates on UEFA's Together #WePlayStrong marketing initiative, which is aimed at getting more girls and women to play football.

I am very happy to have been awarded Player of the Match at the UEFA Women’s Champions League final. My contribution to my team's victory has been recognised, which gives me real satisfaction, but I am also delighted to be able to contribute off the pitch. Thanks to Visa's commitment, I was able to choose an organisation that I hold in high regard. Sport dans la Ville does great work in Lyon and throughout France. Giving them such a significant donation will improve the conditions of access to sport for many young people. Considering what sport has enabled me to achieve, it means a lot to me.

- Amandine Henry, midfielder at Olympique Lyonnais

FC Barcelona v Olympique Lyon - UEFA Women's Champions League Final 2021/22
Olympique Lyonnais Training Session And Press Conference - UEFA Women's Champions League Final 2021/22

About Visa

Project partner

Visa (NYSE: V) is a world leader in digital payments, facilitating transactions between consumers, merchants, financial institutions, and government entities across more than 200 countries and territories. Our mission is to connect the world through the most innovative, convenient, reliable, and secure payments network, enabling individuals, businesses, and economies to thrive. We believe that economies that include everyone everywhere, uplift everyone everywhere and see access as foundational to the future of money movement. Learn more at or visit our blog


Call for projects 2022

Call for projects 2022



This call for projects is aimed at any organisation that shares the values of the UEFA foundation and proposes practical measures to help children, in the areas of access to sport, health, education, employment, personal development and supporting vulnerable children.

Applications are invited from organisations anywhere in the world. Support is not limited to projects within Europe.


Eligibility criteria

The UEFA Foundation for Children will examine and evaluate each project.

The final decision on the selection of projects will be taken by the board of trustees in accordance with the foundation’s statutes and ethics code.

Specific conditions relating to funding are provided in the project criteria.


Apply now

To submit your project, click here. The application deadline is 31 July 2022 midnight.

Candidates will be notified of the progress of their application by the end of 2022.




ECA partners with UEFA Foundation to invite club applications for Ukrainian Relief Fund

ECA partners with UEFA Foundation to invite club applications for Ukrainian Relief Fund

The UEFA Foundation for Children will help ECA implement this humanitarian initiative by allocating donations to fund charitable projects

The European Club Association (ECA), in partnership with the UEFA Foundation for Children, has formally opened the process for member clubs to apply for donations from a €1m fund to help Ukrainians affected by the ongoing conflict. This Ukrainian Relief Fund was announced by ECA chairman Nasser Al-Khelaifi during his opening address to the recent ECA General Assembly in Vienna on 28 March.

Until 17 June, each ECA member club can apply for a donation of between €25,000 and €50,000 to support humanitarian initiatives helping Ukrainian people who continue to be affected by the tragic circumstances in their country.

These funds will enable clubs to take meaningful, concrete action providing  opportunities for the integration and development of displaced children and their families affected by the war. Many clubs in regions with a high influx of refugees have already invested considerable resources in various projects.

ECA is partnering with the UEFA Foundation for Children to manage this humanitarian project. The applications will first be shortlisted by the newly established ECA Ukrainian Relief Committee, before the foundation makes the final decision based on its own assessment and procedures. ECA will then transfer the funds to the foundation, which will be responsible for allocating the money to the successful clubs.

“This generous support from ECA confirms football's solidarity with the victims of the war in Ukraine,” said Urs Kluser, the general secretary of the UEFA Foundation for Children. “It is a great help to the clubs that have selflessly taken in families with children or supported them through football activities over the last four months.”

Announcing the launch of the Ukrainian Relief Fund to ECA General Assembly, Al-Khelaifi remarked on the action already taken by many of its members:

I am very proud to announce that ECA will make an initial €1m available to support our members’ efforts to help the Ukrainian people. Many of our clubs have also offered to find a safe place for Ukrainian youth academy players, and we thank them for this.

(c)Aurelia Ciobanu- (6)