Sport without Stereotypes (SWOST)

Sport without Stereotypes (SWOST)

The UEFA Foundation for Children is supporting SWOST, an Erasmus+ project aimed at transforming mindsets at all levels of European sport by increasing awareness of gender stereotyping and discrimination.

To achieve its goal, SWOST is developing a range digital resources including a self-assessment tool and guidance for sports clubs and associations, to help them improve their gender-based behaviour, regulations and policies. 

The SWOST project is a broad collaborative effort, involving 11 organisations from 9 countries. Together their objectives are to:

  • Promote and increase male and female participation in sports typically considered to be for a particular gender, with a specific focus on younger people.
  • Empower and equip youngsters, by raising awareness of and uprooting gender stereotypes that may influence them and their families when choosing the sports they participate in.
  • Share experiences and highlight successes and best practice in the field of gender mainstreaming.
  • Create an online self-assessment tool to guide sports clubs and associations and direct users to a customised selection of other tools, good practices and resources from other countries or sectors, also to support those organisations’ networking and capacity building.
  • Monitor and improve the latest gender policies used by European sports associations and other SWOST beneficiaries.
  • Raise awareness of the homophobia and gender-based violence experienced in sports clubs.

 

SWOST project coordinator:

SWOST project partners:

   

 

 

 

Disclaimer

The European Commission's support for the production of this article does not constitute an endorsement of the contents, which reflect the views only of the authors, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.

 

 

Call for projects 2021

Call for projects 2021

On 28 June 2021, the UEFA Foundation for Children launches its call for projects which seek to promote children's fundamental rights across the world.

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_Call 2021.

 

Apply now

To submit your project, click here. The application deadline is 15 August 2021 midnight.

Candidates will be notified of the progress of their application by the end of 2021.

 

 

Playing Football for Unity during UEFA EURO 2020

Playing Football for Unity during UEFA EURO 2020

Khalida Popal, a former member of the Afghanistan national women’s team, shares the story of how she fled her home country, experienced the healing power of football, and is now using the beautiful game with FC Nordsjælland to empower young people from different backgrounds through the Football for Unity project.

I grew up with the passion for football

I started playing street football with my brothers when I was a child. I grew up in a warzone in Afghanistan, then when I was nine years old I became a refugee. Until I was a teenager, I lived in a refugee centre in Pakistan, because of the war, and the only thing that could motivate me – keep me together – was sport, especially football.

When I returned to Afghanistan, even though I was already a grown-up, I still acted more like a teenager, and still played football with my brothers on the street, because football is the most popular game in my country.

At that time, people tried to stop me playing football. I was a grown-up woman and so they tried to separate me from my team because it was a boys’ team and, at that time, we didn’t have a girls’ team. People were telling me that I belonged in the kitchen, I belonged at home, and I existed to serve a man and make a man happy. Every time they said ‘no’ to me playing football, I said that I would prove to them that I could do it. Every time I played football, the minute that the ball started rolling, I began to feel happy and disconnected from all the challenges I had faced as a refugee, as a child, or the problems women face in society.

When I was no longer allowed to play football on the street with my brothers, I was determined not to give up, but bring the passion and love that I felt to all the women and the girls my age, so they could also experience it.

Founder of the first first national women’s football team in Afghanistan

Then, at school I started a campaign that spread to different schools, and then went all the way to creating a kind of school league. That’s how we started getting more involvement from the federation, and pushing the federation to recognise our league and establish the first national women’s football team in Afghanistan.

Every time I was pushed down, I got back up and said: “I’m not giving up”, and I was sure I could do it and could do it better. That drove me to set up Afghanistan’s first national women’s team, develop women’s grassroots football in the country, be the very first woman to work at the Afghanistan Football Federation, becoming its first female director and its youngest board member.

Football actually taught me a certain type of activism: how I could use the game as a way to own my narrative but also to help other women in my country to own theirs. That’s how the I started out as an activist, thanks to football, and I’m grateful to the sport that helped me to do it naturally. My activism put me in great danger in my country, so I had to leave. It was not only because of the most religious or extremist people, but also those who were simply afraid of losing power to women. That was a lot of pressure, and I wanted to make a bigger impact and a bigger change, so I chose to leave.

The challenges of being a refugee

When I made it to Norway, my experience of refugee life was different, because I was now grown-up. The first time, I had been a child and I didn’t feel it that deeply. Living in a refugee centre in Norway, I felt so much pressure on women, the lack of social activities, the lack of interest in women and girls. Then I moved to Denmark, and there I again lived in a centre. At that time, I was suffering from depression and trauma. It’s tough living in a refugee centre, leaving your family and everything behind you. It was a tough decision to make. No matter how strong I was at that time, I felt broken, and I cried night and day. Then I witnessed so many refugee women going through depression and stress, and some of them even tried to end their lives. It was so sad. I told myself, ‘I don’t want to sit here and cry’. No matter what happens to me, I don’t want to give up on my mission to empower women and girls. I want to use sport to unite people, women in particular, and help them to be powerful and strong so that they can get through their difficult situation.

I remember feeling that life in a refugee centre was like having no identity – you’re no one. You’re not a member of society, even if you’re in a very well-developed country. You’re just no one. You don’t have anything and there aren’t so many activities to keep you busy. There are a lot of restrictions and you have an uncertain future: You don’t know what is waiting for you. Living in a refugee centre, it felt like I was like a doll hanging in the air: I couldn’t land on my feet, I couldn’t fly in the sky; I was just left hanging, and I didn’t know what to do.

Then I said to myself, ‘I have to pull myself together and also help others.’ So, once again I have to use the power of sport that helped me get through tough situations in my country. So, I started getting women and girls living in the same centre involved. I knocked on doors and said, ‘Come on outside, we’re going for a run, then we’ll play some football and then we’ll do some dancing.’

I created my own organisation "Girl Power"

Once I got permission to stay in Denmark – I was still in the refugee centre but I was playing in a football club – I decided to set up my own organisation, Girl Power, whose main focus is empowering women – refugees, immigrants or ethnic minorities – to gain an informal education. Girl Power is more about empowering and supporting girls and women, and building bridges between the local population and the refugee community, in an organisation where like-minded people meet up, share their stories and experiences, and network. Girl Power organises sports activities in the refugee centres, where the young leaders, all women from a variety of cultural backgrounds, coach the refugees, and then we offer them education, or leadership academies.

Football for Unity project

Then I started working with FC Nordsjælland, club with women's and men's football, where my main responsibility is community projects and women's football. I’m very proud and happy this year to be working with streetfootballworld and the UEFA Foundation for Children through the Football for Unity project that supports this vision and mission, by connecting the various stakeholders and different organisations, in one joint project. That is the power of football – bringing unity.

I’m thrilled to be leading a project that focuses on youth empowerment. It involves young people who we call ‘community champions’, from all sorts of cultural backgrounds. We have Danes and people from different ethnic minorities, boys and girls together. And it’s done through a leadership programme made up of various educational workshops that are like youth discussion forums. We talk about inclusion, integration, the effect of sport on young people's lives, and also the impact of sport and unity on society. It's fantastic, and football is all part of those activities.

We need to bring people together to support each other, because it’s not refugees that are the problem. If I’m living in Denmark with refugee status right now, it was not by choice. I didn't just say: ‘Let's go and have some fun being a refugee.’ Nobody wants to leave their country, their dreams, their family, their heritage and everything they belong to. But there are situations that force people to become refugees. It's not the refugees' problem – it's the world's problem. And it's our collective responsibility to take care of each other, because there are refugees from wars, but also refugees from environmental crises. And there will be many, many more.

So, how can we have a socially responsible world where everyone is nice to each other, we take care of each other and everybody supports each other?

Like in football. When you walk onto the pitch, it doesn't matter how rich or poor you are, how white or how black you are, or how brown you are, you play the same game. All that matters are the team and the goals. That's why football is a good lesson for everybody all around the world. You just need to think about the pitch, the team and the purpose, to just have a wonderful world together, where people accept each other, respect each other, and are role models to each other too.

That's how we do it in the Football for Unity project. The best thing is that it’s not a refugee project; it’s a unity project involving not only people currently living in refugee centres, but also second-generation immigrants, born and raised in Denmark, and youngsters whose both parents are Danish. So, it’s like a common ground where they all come together under one umbrella. I really love the idea of not just focusing on one group, but adopting more of a ‘let’s do something together; let’s bring people from different backgrounds together’ approach. The main aim is, of course, to support and empower young people. One of the challenges in Danish society is that refugees get a lot of negative press, such as: ‘Refugees are coming to take our social benefits. They take our money. They take our jobs.’ But this sort of project helps to connect people by sharing their stories: ‘Why am I here? Why am I in Denmark? I’m a refugee and what is that like?’

Refugees need role models

That’s part of why I give back. When I run this project and also, for example, lead some of the workshops, refugees and non-refugees see me as a role model. The refugees see me and say, ‘Oh, she can do that, so I could do it too.’ Then non-refugees see me and say, ‘She’s not living here for free; she’s not coming here to take our money; she’s actually giving back to society. She needed protection, but she’s also earning a living and paying tax. So she’s contributing to society.’I think it’s very important for the next generation to have role models to empower youngsters from all cultural backgrounds, so they can say, ‘Okay, I can do this. I can be part of it.’ And it will also help change the mindset in society to one of, ‘Yes, refugees come, but they’re not here for the money; they also contribute to society. Their lives were in danger, or there were facing certain social or political problems.’ So, that’s why we need a lot of role models in Europe, especially.

My wish for this EURO

If the pandemic has taught everybody a lesson, it is how difficult it is to be isolated, miss our loved ones, not have access to the things we want, be deprived of the freedom we want. So, I really hope that during this UEFA EURO 2020, people will feel more respect, acceptance, and just enjoy the unity and inclusion and fun of the game.

 

Football for Unity is a project co-funded by the European Union’s Asylum, Migration and Integration Fund. For more information, please click here.

 

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The UEFA Foundation for Children and KeeeX win WSIS Prize 2021

The UEFA Foundation for Children and KeeeX win WSIS Prize 2021

The World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) Prizes are an international contest created to reward new technologies that support sustainable development.

Of the 1,270 projects submitted in 2021, 360 were shortlisted as finalists for an online vote.

We are proud to announce that our project ‘Remote monitoring of funding using a blockchain trusted technology’, organised in collaboration with the UEFA Foundation for Children, was voted one of the top 5 projects in our category.

Thank you to all who voted and helped us to get this far. Special thanks also to the UEFA Foundation for Children, for having such confidence in us right from the start this collaboration, which has turned out to be a wonderful joint adventure.

 

Consult the full list of champion projects here

 

UEFA Foundation for Children signs Ivan Rakitić

UEFA Foundation for Children signs Ivan Rakitić

Croatian legend is "looking forward to putting smiles on children's faces" as the organisation's first official ambassador

The UEFA Foundation for Children is proud to announce that Sevilla midfielder Ivan Rakitić is to join the organisation as its first official ambassador. The former Croatian international will have the opportunity to take part in UEFA Foundation-led initiatives, as well as promoting the good work undertaken by the body to help improve the lives of children worldwide.

“To be a part of the UEFA Foundation family gives me a lot of pride,” Rakitić explained.

“I’m really happy about it, and it gives me a lot of responsibility to show everyone that together with the UEFA Foundation and all the players we can accomplish a lot and, above all, help children all over the world smile with joy. The fact that I’m a father of two girls means that I know and understand how important it is to see that smile on children’s faces.”

Commitment to improving lives

UEFA president Aleksander Čeferin, who is also chairman of the board of the UEFA Foundation for Children, is delighted that Rakitić has committed his support to the organisation.

“Ivan Rakitić is not only one of the greatest midfielders of his generation, he is also a person who wants to make a tangible difference away from the pitch in order to improve the lives of others,” said president Čeferin.

“I have been extremely impressed with Ivan’s commitment and desire to help children around the world and we are looking forward to working closely with him in order to achieve these goals. The door is always open for players, both past and present, to follow Ivan’s example and join the UEFA Foundation in an ambassadorial role.”

Being part of a family

Having won the UEFA Champions League with Barcelona in 2015 and a year earlier the UEFA Europa League as captain of Sevilla, Rakitić also amassed over 100 caps for Croatia. While he has no immediate plans to hang up his boots, he already has one eye on a post-footballing career.

“I hope that I have many good years ahead of me on the pitch, but of course once I retire, I’m convinced that I’ll have more time and more opportunities to travel and be available," he said.

“Obviously, I want to give [this ambassadorial role] my all from day one. But when that [retirement] day finally arrives, I’m sure that I’ll have more time [to take part in projects] and my excitement will only increase.

“The idea of being a part of this family already has me excited to get started, and I hope to be able to do so for many years because I can see how important it is. It’s important work that affects us all, which is to make many children happy.”

I have been extremely impressed with Ivan’s commitment and desire to help children around the world and we are looking forward to working closely with him in order to achieve these goals. The door is always open for players, both past and present, to follow Ivan’s example and join the UEFA Foundation in an ambassadorial role.

- Aleksander Čeferin, UEFA president

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Rakitic (Photo by Emilio Andreoli/Getty Images)

Children meet UEFA Champions League stars virtually before kick-off

Children meet UEFA Champions League stars virtually before kick-off

The UEFA Foundation for Children and Mastercard have been offering several children a once in a lifetime chance to welcome UEFA Champions League stars virtually as they enter stadiums across Europe. Over two weeks, eight children from around Europe interacted with players from some of the biggest European football clubs as they arrived for their official 2020 UEFA Champions League matches.

The young children waved to an array of superstars including Mo Salah (Liverpool),  Sadio Mané (Liverpool), Jordan Henderson (Liverpool), Gini Wijnaldum (Liverpool), Roberto Firmino (Liverpool), Thorgan Hazard (Dortmund), Axel Witsel (Dortmund), Marco Reus (Dortmund), Justin Kluivert (Leipzig), Robert Lewandowski (Bayern) and Harry Maguire (Manchester United).

On the 25 November, 7-year-old Davion and 10-year-old Ashley welcomed the players ahead of the UEFA Champions League game between Ajax and Midtjylland. Davion and Ashley are both huge Ajax fans and Ashley was particularly excited to welcome her favourite player; dutch superstar, Klaas-Jan Huntelaar. Davion and Ashely are from our partner organisation – the Johann Cruyff Foundation. On the same evening, 8-year-old Zubair welcomed the reigning European champions, Bayern Munich as they faced RB Salzburg.  Zubair is from our partner organisation, Kicken Ohne Grenzen.

On the 1 December, Lucas and Madison from the Liverpool School of Medicine and the Liverpool FC Foundation welcomed the Liverpool players as they took on European giants, Ajax.  Lucas was particularly excited to welcome his favourite player, Sadio Mané:

I am so excited. I love Sadio Mané. Thank you so much for this amazing opportunity.

Madison’s favourite player is Bobby Firmino and she also loves to play football. Despite being injured recently, Madison has attended training every week to help the coaches and watch her teammates.

Lucas and Madison were extremely excited when they got a bonus wave and a big hello from Liverpool FC head coach, Jürgen Klopp.

On the 2 December, 9-year-old Mia and 8-year-old Mario welcomed the players from Dortmund and Lazio. Mia and Mario were both very excited to welcome their favourite players Marco Reus and Erling Haaland. Mia and Mario are from our partner organisation, the European Football Development Network (EFDN) and both play football for Dortmund.

Finally, on the 8 December, 9-year-old Liam from Germany welcomed the star players from Manchester United and Leipzig before their official UEFA Champions League match.  Liam loves to play football and his favourite club is RB Leipzig. Liam’s dreams became real as he welcomed the team and especially his favourite players Dayot Upamecano, Kevin Kampl and Marcel Sabitzer. He also got to meet and greet the RB Leipzig Head coach, Julian Nagelsmann. Liam is linked to our partner organisation, the German football federation and Liam also plays for the junior RB Leipzig team.

A big thank you to all the children and all our partner organisations for helping create these brilliant memories.

 

 

 

 

 

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Auction: official signed shirts and footballs from UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League

Auction: official signed shirts and footballs from UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League

Signed shirts worn by Lionel Messi from Barcelona, Sami Khedira from Juvenus and Sergio Ramos from Real Madrid, the UEFA Champions League ball signed by Chelsea players and much more memorabilia are available now on auctions.uefafoundation.org . Get a shirt signed by your favourite player while supporting humanitarian projects around the world.

The UEFA Foundation for Children is auctioning many limited-edition items, including shirts and footballs from the UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League. The foundation helps children and safeguards their rights, as defined by the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child.

The proceeds will be used to finance humanitarian and development projects, mainly involving sport and football, that promote health, education, personal development and the integration of minorities.

Stack Sports will provide GameDay, its online auction platform, for the UEFA Foundation for Children fundraising activities.

Cyril Pellevat, the head of administration at the UEFA Foundation for Children, welcomed the partnership: "The UEFA Foundation for Children is pleased to digitise its fundraising activities by partnering with Stack Sports. Football fans all around the world will have a chance to win limited edition memorabilia from official UEFA Champions League and Europa League matches.”

The UEFA Foundation for Children is pleased to digitise its fundraising activities by partnering with Stack Sports. Football fans all around the world will have a chance to win limited edition memorabilia from official UEFA Champions League and Europa League matches.

- Cyril Pellevat, the head of administration at the UEFA Foundation for Children

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About Stack Sports

Stack Sports has been providing next-generation technology solutions on the Australian market since 2001 and has extended its key markets to include Europe, the United Kingdom and New Zealand. Other Stack Sports partners in Europe include Basketball England, the Rugby Football League, Basketball Ireland, World Bowling and Run for All. Stack Sports provides membership, competition and event management platforms along with various digital websites, e-commerce, and fundraising solutions for the sports community.

 

Visa donates €50,000 to UEFA Foundation-backed charity selected by Delphine Cascarino

Visa donates €50,000 to UEFA Foundation-backed charity selected by Delphine Cascarino

Player of the Match winner from last season’s UEFA Women’s Champions League final, Delphine Cascarino, has selected French charity Sport dans la Ville to receive a €50,000 donation from Visa

Olympique Lyonnais forward Delphine Cascarino has directed a €50,000 donation from Visa to Sport dans la Ville, which is supported by the UEFA Foundation for Children.

The 23-year-old was instrumental in helping her team defeat VfL Wolfsburg 3-1 in August’s UEFA Women's Champions League final in San Sebastián and was named Player of the Match, presented by Visa.the Player of the Match the opportunity to choose one of the 245 charities supported by the UEFA Foundation for Children.

“I was honoured to be named UEFA Women’s Champions League final’s player of the match," Cascarino said. "I am of course delighted my contribution has been recognised on the pitch, but it is a wonderful feeling to be able to make a difference off the field of play as well.

“Thanks to the generosity of Visa, I am in a position to choose an organisation which is very close to my heart. Sport dans la Ville is doing some exceptional work in my hometown of Lyon and is supporting young people across France. I’m proud to have played a small part in improving people’s lives and am looking forward to charting their progress over the coming years.”

Sport dans la Ville, a longstanding 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, today the charity operates in 46 urban areas and has supported more than 12,000 at-risk youths across the country.

“This is a wonderful initiative by Visa to give Delphine Cascarino the opportunity to make a potentially life-changing gesture,” said Nadine Kessler, UEFA’s chief of women’s football. “Football has the power to initiate positive change, by giving girls confidence, resilience and important life skills. This is why I am so delighted that through the UEFA Foundation for Children, last season’s final will have a lasting legacy in helping to improve the lives of youngsters.”

“I want to thank Visa and Delphine on behalf of the entire Sport dans la Ville organisation for this very generous donation,” said Nicholas Eschermann, president of Sport dans la Ville. “We are very lucky to receive this level of support from such a player and company and we look forward to using this to expand our work.”

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

The milestone agreement has made Visa a main partner of the UEFA Women's Champions League, UEFA Women's EURO, the UEFA European Women's Under-19 and U17 Championships and UEFA Women's Futsal EURO until 2025, as well as UEFA's football marketing platform Together #WePlayStrong, which is aimed at getting more girls and women to play football.

I was honoured to be named UEFA Women’s Champions League final’s player of the match. I am of course delighted my contribution has been recognised on the pitch, but it is a wonderful feeling to be able to make a difference off the field of play as well.

Thanks to the generosity of Visa, I am in a position to choose an organisation which is very close to my heart. Sport dans la Ville is doing some exceptional work in my hometown of Lyon and is supporting young people across France. I’m proud to have played a small part in improving people’s lives and am looking forward to charting their progress over the coming years.

- Delphine Cascarino, Olympique Lyonnais player

Visa

I want to thank Visa and Delphine on behalf of the entire Sport dans la Ville organisation for this very generous donation. We are very lucky to receive this level of support from such a player and company and we look forward to using this to expand our work.

- Nicholas Eschermann, president of Sport dans la Ville

VISA SDLV-Brice Blondel-32

About Visa

Visa Inc. (NYSE: V) is the world’s leader in digital payments. Our mission is to connect the world through the most innovative, reliable and secure payment network - enabling individuals, businesses and economies to thrive. Our advanced global processing network, VisaNet, provides secure and reliable payments around the world, and is capable of handling more than 65,000 transaction messages a second. The company’s relentless focus on innovation is a catalyst for the rapid growth of digital commerce on any device for everyone, everywhere. As the world moves from analog to digital, Visa is applying our brand, products, people, network and scale to reshape the future of commerce. For more information, visit: visa.fr/blog and @Visa_Fr.

Youngsters meet UEFA Champions League stars virtually before kick-off

Youngsters meet UEFA Champions League stars virtually before kick-off

THE UEFA FOUNDATION FOR CHILDREN AND MASTERCARD HAVE BEEN OFFERING YOUNGSTERS SUFFERING FROM LIFE THREATENING ILLNESSES THE CHANCE TO MEET UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE STARS VIRTUALLY AS THEY ENTER THE STADIUM

Player mascots from England, Germany, Italy and Spain are being given the opportunity to meet some of the world's greatest footballers virtually during the UEFA Champions League final tournament. Two youngsters got to interact with the likes of Kylian Mbappé and Ángel Di María before Tuesday's semi-final between Leipzig and Paris Saint-Germain, and another virtual meeting will take place in the lead-up to Sunday's final.

The initiative has been set up by UEFA Champions League partner Mastercard in conjunction with the UEFA Foundation for Children, which has selected the children who have been appearing virtually at the Estádio do Sport Lisboa e Benfica in Lisbon.

That unique opportunity was enjoyed by Ruby Wilson and Annika Wein ahead of the last-four contest between Leipzig and Paris, with both youngsters given the chance to welcome and interact with the players as they entered the stadium. Ruby, a football-mad ten-year-old from Sunderland in the northeast of England, is currently undergoing chemotherapy, while 11-year-old Annika Wein is receiving treatment at a cancer clinic in Frankfurt.

"Wow! I will remember this day for the rest of my life! Thank you!" said Ruby upon learning she had been chosen to take part in the activation. "After the doctor only recently told me that I might not play football ever again, this lifted my spirits so much! I will never forget this day."

"Thank you, thank you, thank you!" said Annika. "I was really looking forward to waving at the players. I love my new football kit too – it's amazing! Thank you again."

UEFA President Aleksander Čeferin, who is also the chairman of the board of the UEFA Foundation for Children also passed by and interacted with Annika and Ruby.

The two children were chosen by the UEFA Foundation from projects being undertaken in Europe in conjunction with other organisations. Ruby is a member of the Newcastle United Foundation, which offers support to children living with disabilities, while Annika is at the Klinik für Kinder- und Jugendmedizin, part of the Universitätsklinikum in Frankfurt.

Nicoló from Italy, who devours Panini stickers and sports newspapers with relish, will have the chance to meet the players before the final. He is suffering from severe cognitive impairment and was chosen by the Play for Change initiative, which is based in Milan. He will be joined by Amir who is currently at the Vall d’Hebron hospital in Barcelona, which is being supported by the Eric Abidal Foundation – an organisation which helps children who are living with cancer.

"The UEFA Foundation is delighted to support such a wonderful initiative," said the UEFA Foundation's general secretary, Urs Kluser. "Children in hospital rarely get the chance to be involved in anything like this – it was wonderful to see their huge smiles and happy faces as they welcomed the players to the stadium."

"Thank you to our partners for making this possible – the Newcastle United Foundation and the Klinik für Kinder- und Jugendmedizin, Universitätsklinikum Frankfurt. Finally, a big thank you to key sponsor Mastercard for supporting the UEFA Champions League for over 25 years. Together, we helped make this once-in-a-lifetime experience a reality for Ruby and Annika."

Mastercard has been a committed partner of the UEFA Champions League for more than a quarter of a century, while its player mascot programme has given children from around the globe priceless memories over the years. However, given the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, it was forced to come up with a new plan for this year's competition.

"Since the beginning of the pandemic, we have focused on people and thus needed to pivot quickly from physical to digital experiences, to reflect the changing environments we are living in," said Jeannette Liendo, senior vice-president, marketing and communications, Mastercard Europe.

"For the first time ever, at this year’s semi-final our player mascots Ruby and Annika had the chance to interact live with the Paris Saint Germain and RB Leipzig players as they arrived at the stadium. For the UEFA Champions League final, Nicoló and Amir will also enjoy a once in a lifetime experience as they virtually welcome the players from Bayern Munich and Paris Saint Germain. As we strive to push the limits as a tech innovator, we hope this will create a truly memorable experience for our mascots to celebrate the return of the UEFA Champions League. We are very proud that 2020 will see our first ever digital activation for the player mascots."

 

 

 

The International Trade Centre (ITC), UEFA Foundation for Children and partners launched life-skills curriculum for young people using football as a coaching medium

The International Trade Centre (ITC), UEFA Foundation for Children and partners launched life-skills curriculum for young people in developing countries using football as coaching medium

A new curriculum using football to teach entrepreneurship and employability life-skills to young people in developing countries was launched by the International Trade Centre, the UEFA Foundation for Children, Kick4Life and Streetfootballworld on 12 August 2020.

The curriculum was unveiled at UEFA headquarters in Nyon, Switzerland, on to mark International Youth Day by acting ITC Executive Director Dorothy Tembo and Urs Kluser, General-Secretary of the UEFA Foundation for Children.

‘Football motivates and enthuses young people in a way that no other sport does,’ Ms. Tembo said. ‘The investments made by the football industry on the economic and social development of young people have great potential for collaboration and action in advancing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). This new publication adds to that effort.’

‘The UEFA Foundation for Children is pleased to be a partner in such a valuable, wide reaching project. Young people from a range of developing countries will undoubtedly benefit hugely from learning valuable life skills such as communication, decision making and teamwork all whilst enjoying playing the beautiful round ball game,’ Mr. Kluser said.

The curriculum was developed to support the Kick for Trade initiative, which fosters football-based life-skills to promote social inclusion, employability and entrepreneurship for young people. The initiative was jointly created by ITC’s Youth and Trade Programme and UEFA Foundation in May 2019.

After initial pilot activities in The Gambia and Guinea in 2019, the curriculum was shaped and developed to enable youth to build transferable skills like leadership and teamwork by playing football.

Life-skills that form part of the toolkit include problem-solving, creative thinking, communication and interpersonal skills, self-awareness and empathy, assertiveness and composure, and resilience.

The program is supported by Pascal Feindoune (ex player from St Etienne ex international Guinean player).

 

The curriculum is designed to be delivered by trained life-skills coaches in inclusive environments and centres on 11 sessions each on youth employability and entrepreneurship. Only the basic minimum of equipment is required to deliver the sessions successfully, making the curriculum suitable for many contexts where many young people can benefit.

On-site pilot activities of the Kick for Trade initiative are currently on hold in The Gambia and Guinea due to the COVID-19 pandemic. But the curriculum is set to be rolled out in countries that feature ITC youth-related projects with entrepreneurship and employability components once restrictions are lifted.

For more information, visit the official ITC media release here.

 

 

 

Kick for trad Launch
Kick for trade Launch
Kick for trate launch
Kick for trade Toolkit

Call for projects 2020

Call for projects 2020

On 1 July 2020 the UEFA Foundation for Children launched its call for projects which seek to promote children's fundamental rights across the world.

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 15 August 2020.

Candidates will be notified of the progress of their application by the end of 2020.

 

 

 

H&M teams up with the UEFA Foundation for Children to support humanitarian projects

UEFA Foundation for Children teams up with H&M to support humanitarian projects

Hennes & Mauritz GBC - H&M has announced a special football shirt collection for kids, with 100% of the profits going to the UEFA Foundation for Children. The collection features replica football shirts from 16 countries around the world and will be available in stores and on hm.com from 21 May.

The intent is to encourage children to stay active and take an interest in the global aspect of football, with a view to meaningfully contributing to their development. All proceeds from the selling will go towards the existing projects run by Play for Change, an international sport for development charity that offers sporting opportunities to under-privileged children.

Sofia Löfstedt, Head of Kidswear Design at H&M, said, “We want children to stay active wherever they have the possibility these days – if only at home or in their own backyard, or perhaps in school – but also give them hope for a brighter and even more dynamic future. With this football shirt collection, our aim is to not only inspire children all around the world right now, but also ensure the wellbeing of children for generations to come by donating 100% of the profits to the UEFA Foundation for Children.”

Urs Kluser, general secretary of the UEFA Foundation for Children, added, “Sport and play are vital for the physical and intellectual development of any child. When children play football, they get lost in the game. Football enables them to be children and dream big. This significant support from H&M will allow us to assist even more children in need and make a positive impact on their futures.”

Sport and play are vital for the physical and intellectual development of any child. When children play football, they get lost in the game. Football enables them to be children and dream big. This significant support from H&M will allow us to assist even more children in need and make a positive impact on their futures.

- Urs Kluser, general secretary of the UEFA Foundation for Children

Play for Change ITA - foto-27
Play for Change ITA - foto-30
Play for Change ITA - DSC_9225
Play dor Change ITA - foto-10

Project partner

Project Partner

Play for Change is an International Sport for Development Charity   with the goal to enhance life opportunities for under-privileged children by using the powerful values of sport.

Interactive photographic exhibition

Interactive photographic exhibition

Give children a voice ...

 

The Foundation is established since April 2015. It underlines the will of UEFA, its founder, to use the power of football to improve the lives of disadvantaged children around the world. Photography was chosen to explain about the reasons for our commitment and the means put in place to achieve our mission: to defend the rights of the most vulnerable children by supporting NGO projects in the fields of health, disability, social inclusion of minorities, education and personal development up to employability.

The objectives of the exhibition are the following:

  • showing the foundation’s activities and arouse curiosity;
  • raising awareness of the environment of disfavoured children;
  • promoting the rights of the child and those of minorities (especially girls and children with disabilities through football);
  • campaigning for the improvement of the living conditions and social integration of disadvantaged children and to open a reflection on children’s situations in the world.

Ten projects are highlighted in this exhibition and giving the voice to educators and beneficiaries. Four of his projects are also presented in digital and interactive format.

You can discover the digital exhibition here. It is a zip file you need to 1)to download; 2) to unzip; 3) to go in the build folder and launch the photo expo app.

Download the app.

 

 

Overview of the projects

Blind Solidarity – This project was created after a trip to Mali by photographer Catherine Cabrol. On discovering the difficult living conditions of the blind youngsters, she was photographing, she decided to help them with Libre Vue association and provided them with a pitch and equipment so they could play blind football.

Sport knows no handicap – PluSport is an umbrella organisation for disabled sport in Switzerland. Its Goal Plus project harnesses the passion for football to give all disabled children – including those who use a wheelchair – an opportunity to play the game.

Autism and New Technologies – The UEFA Foundation for Children awarded FIRAH, the International Foundation of Applied Disability Research, a grant to improve communication for autistic children through its Autism and New Technologies project. L’Oiseau Blanc, a school that integrates autistic children, invited us in to see how technology can improve the children’s day-to-day lives.

Teaching inclusive football - This coach education programme run by the Scort Foundation and Football Club Social Alliance empowers young women and men to become proactive community leaders. In Ukraine, the coaches are working with young children affected by the conflict.

We Welcome Young Refugees - Since 2015, Royal Europa 90 Kraainem FC has been running an initiative to integrate young asylum seekers, entitled We Welcome Young Refugees. The project has already reached out to more than 1,500 unaccompanied minors.

Heroes on the field The Cruyff Foundation provides underprivileged communities all over the world with safe playgrounds where children can grow up being active, improving their physical and mental development. The Heroes of the Cruyff Courts programme trains young coaches so that they can be role models in their neighbourhoods.

From sport to employment – Sport dans la Ville is a French organisation that uses sport to foster social inclusion. Its Job dans la Ville programme supports job creation and helps to integrate these youngsters into society, ensuring fairer life opportunities for all.

Peace and reconciliation through sport – The National Children’s Football Alliance has been organising the Global Peace Games since 2014 to celebrate peace through football. This peace education week, attended by thousands of young people from different backgrounds, aims to develop interpersonal and intercultural skills in the context of current conflicts.

Go girls! – This PSG Foundation project allows young girls living in deprived neighbourhoods to discover and enjoy sports and cultural activities. They are then encouraged to pursue an activity by joining a sports club.

Access to sport at any price – Red Deporte y Cooperación uses the power of sport to promote intercultural integration, focusing on leadership, gender equality, HIV prevention, hygiene and basic health education, and alcohol and drug prevention. This programme is run in Cañada Real, on the outskirts of Madrid.

 

All images were taken by artist photographer Catherine Cabrol

 

Heros on the field, project run by Cruyff Foundation

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Autism and New Technologies, project run by FIRAH

peace through sport

Peace through sport, project run by National Children's Football Alliance

PSG Foundation
kraainem

Go Girls! , project run by PSG Foundation                                                                                 We Welcome young refugees, project run by Royal Europa 90 Kraainem FC

Call for projects 2019

Call for projects 2019

On 1 July the UEFA Foundation for Children launched its 2019 call for projects that seek to promote children’s fundamental rights across the globe.

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.

To submit your project, click on this link. The application deadline is 31 July 2019.

Candidates will be notified of the progress of their application by the end of 2019.

 

 

UEFA Foundation for Children launches 2018 call for projects

On 13 August, the UEFA Foundation for Children launched its 2018 call for projects that seek to promote children’s fundamental rights across the globe.

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 particular 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

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.

To submit your project, click on this link. The application deadline is 14 September 2018.

Candidates will be notified of the progress of their application by the end of 2018.

Making football dreams come true

The foundation endeavours to put a smile on the faces of children and young people who are seriously ill or whose lives have been changed forever an accident by enabling them to meet their favourite player or a prestigious football team, or simply to enjoy the unique experience of watching a major European match.

For the last three years, we have been working closely with Etoile filante/Sternschnuppe and Make a Wish in Switzerland and the French association Rêves to provide unforgettable experiences for children and the families that support them day after day. We do all we can to give them a couple of magical days to help them through the more difficult moments.

The foundation made the dreams of 46 children come true during the 2017/18 season:

  • 18 children saw their favourite player in action for their club
  • 6 children met the players of their national team
  • 22 children watched the UEFA Europa League and UEFA Champions League finals

Club matches :

  • Gwendal’s dream came true when he met the FC Barcelona players and watched the Champions League match between FC Barcelona and Olympiacos FC on 18 October.
  • Larisa met the player David Luiz and attended the Champions League match between Chelsea FC and AS Roma on 18 October.
  • Christoph, whose dream was to see the Borussia Dortmund team, met them at their Champions League match against Tottenham Hotspur FC on 21 November.
  • Simone met Neymar at a training session and at the Champions League match between Celtic FC and Paris Saint-Germain on 22 November.
  • Bruno met his favourite team, Juventus, at their Champions League match against FC Barcelona on 22 November.
  • Dominic met the FC Bayern München players and watched their match against Paris Saint-Germain on 5 December.
  • Sami watched Paris Saint-Germain’s match against FC Bayern München in Munich on 5 December.
  • Mathis watched Paris Saint-Germain’s match against FC Bayern München in Munich on 5 December.
  • Mateo’s dream of seeing Real Madrid CF in action came true on 6 December 2017, when he watched them play Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League.
  • Marco had dreamt of meeting AC Milan goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma and was given the chance to do so on 22 February.
  • Timoty fulfilled his dream of meeting Lionel Messi and watching an FC Barcelona match on 4 April, when they played AS Roma in the Champions League quarter-final second leg.
  • Enzo fulfilled his dream of meeting Lionel Messi and watching an FC Barcelona match on 4 April, when they played AS Roma in the Champions League quarter-final second leg.
  • Loic fulfilled his dream of meeting Lionel Messi and watching an FC Barcelona match on 4 April, when they played AS Roma in the Champions League quarter-final second leg.
  • Ulrich had dreamt of meeting Paul Pogba and was able to do so at a training session before Manchester United FC played Sevilla FC on 13 March.
  • Gabriele met the player David Luiz and watched the Champions League match between Chelsea FC and FC Barcelona on 20 February.
  • Océane’s dream of meeting Dimitri Payet came true at the Europa League semi-final in Marseille.
  • Azra attended the Istanbul derby between Galatasaray AŞ and Beşiktaş JK on 29 April.

National team matches:

  • Julien met Gianluigi Buffon and Giorgio Chiellini when Italy played their European Qualifier against FYR Macedonia on 6 October.
  • Noa met the Portugal team on 10 October, when they played their European Qualifier against Switzerland.
  • Jorim met the Portugal team on 10 October, when they played their European Qualifier against Switzerland.
  • Gautier met the French national team in Saint Denis (Paris) on 11 November after the friendly against Wales.
  • Alex met the French national team in Saint Denis (Paris) on 11 November after the friendly against Wales.
  • Calvyn met the French national team in Saint Denis (Paris) on 11 November after the friendly against Wales.

Finals:

  • Dylan fulfilled his dream by watching his favourite team, Olympique de Marseille, contest the Europa League final in Lyon.
  • A group of nine young people from the Air Pur et Soleil association, who were going through a tough time in their lives, attended the Europa League final. They also had lunch with famous French player Yann M’Vila of AS Saint-Étienne.
  • A group of 12 youngsters from the Sport dans la Ville association (France) were rewarded for their good behaviour and exemplary hard work for the association with a trip to Kyiv to watch the Champions League final.