UEFA President sees football’s force for good in Uganda

UEFA President sees football's force for good in Uganda

Aleksander Čeferin visits non-governmental organisation that is using sport to bring hope to young people growing up in Kampala slum district.

UEFA President Aleksander Čeferin witnessed firsthand how sport is helping to improve the lives of vulnerable, young people when he visited one of Uganda’s largest slum communities this week.

During his stay in the capital Kampala, Mr Čeferin travelled to the Acholi Quarters district, home to some 20,000 residents, where the Sports for Resilience and Empowerment Project (SREP) is building sports facilities, training coaches and creating social and economic opportunities for 2,500 children and 850 caregivers.

The project is run by non-governmental organisation, the Aliguma Foundation, which receives funding support from the UEFA Foundation for Children.

"Football is maybe the most powerful thing in the world.”

Aleksander Čeferin, UEFA President

Clearly moved by the warmth of his welcome and his conversations with local schoolchildren and community leaders. “It's not only about elite competitions. but it can also be a force for good,” added the UEFA President, after watching an exhibition football match played on a makeshift football pitch in Acholi. “We should use it to do good and working with the Aliguma Foundation is one way we do it.”


"This wasn't just an ordinary visit. It was a game-changer. UEFA President walking through one of the largest slum communities in Kampala gave hope to so many destitute people. We can dream again knowing that all things are possible."

Ritah Aliguma, Aliguma Foundation CEO

UEFA commitment

Both Mr Čeferin's visit and his words of support underline UEFA's commitment to using football’s popularity and influence as a force for good. Since its establishment in 2015, the UEFA Foundation has supported over 400 projects worldwide, donated equipment and provided grants - all with the goal of assisting the world’s poorest, most vulnerable children or crisis-stricken regions.

UEFA’s President was travelling to the African continent for the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic, en route to attending the 73rd FIFA Congress in Kigali, Rwanda.


The Aliguma Foundation

Project Partner

Founded by Ritah Aliguma in 2017, the Aliguma Foundation aims to use football to improve the lives of young people in slum communities. The initiative empowers beneficiaries to build better lives for themselves and their families by facilitating access to education, essential health care and football training for children.


Biography Andrea Radrizzani


Biography Andrea Radrizzani.

Born September 1, 1974 in Italy, Andrea Radrizzani is a leading entrepreneur who has been at the forefront of the global sports media industry for the past 20 years.

He began his career in sports media in 1999 with digital sports content distributor Media Partners, where he founded its China business. He went on to cofound MP & Silva in 2004, launching the renowned sports media agency’s operations from its headquarters in Singapore and leading its global expansion into 20 countries.

Andrea is the Founder and Chairman of Aser Ventures, a pioneering investment platform specialising in sports, media and technology. He has launched the broadcasting group Eleven Sports. He has also led investments in a number of sports, media and technology companies including Creed Media, Hellodi, Sports Data Labs, Epico and more.

Andrea is the Founder and Chairman of Play for Change – an international charity that uses the power of sport to improve the lives of children around the world.

He holds a bachelor’s degree in Public Relations from IULM University, Milan.

Call for projects

Through the call for projects, we are working to promote the fundamental rights of vulnerable children all over the world.

We welcome applications from any organisation that shares the values of the UEFA Foundation for Children and proposes practical measures to help children in the following areas:


Access to sport


Personal development


Disabled children


Healthy lifestyle


Conflict victims


Gender equality


Environmental protection




Infrastructure and equipment


Strengthening partnerships

The foundation’s support is not limited to projects in Europe.

Our core aims are solidarity and development aid, rooted in respect for the ethical values that we share with our partners.

Successful projects must also meet certain criteria set out by the board of trustees.

Selection process

The UEFA Foundation for Children examines and evaluates every project submitted.
The board of trustees takes a final decision on the selection of projects at its autumn meeting in accordance with the Statutes.

Candidate registration platform

Call for projects 2023 is currently closed.

Next call for projects : June/July 2024.

Our donors

The foundation surrounds itself with individual and institutional supporters, including friends, partners and donors. The board of trustees nominates ‘Friends of the foundation’.


A ‘Friend of the foundation’ is an individual or institution who has demonstrated a particular attachment to the foundation’s cause, whether through their actions, connections or contributions.
At the board of trustees’ first meeting on 23 March 2015, UEFA – the foundation’s founder – was named as a permanent Friend.



A donor is any individual or institution who helps the foundation to achieve its objectives by making a one-off donation or contribution or by leaving a bequest.


Today, thanks to the growing importance of corporate social responsibility in economic and political life, our foundation’s activities and projects are starting to resonate with numerous new public and private partners who support us financially. The sponsors of UEFA competitions, already involved in the football side of things, are increasingly keen to add a social dimension to their activities.

Logo Fedex
Logo EU
Logo Adidas
Logo mastercard
Logo Lays
Logo Just eat
Logo Strauss

Ambassadors of the foundation

Ambassadors named by the board of trustees work to promote the foundation’s activities.

These ambassadors are well-known public figures who use their platform to raise awareness of the plight of children around the world and of the projects supported by the UEFA Foundation for Children.

Their role is to represent the foundation to the public, partners and Friends of the foundation, all the while conveying positive messages about our projects.


Ivan Rakitić was the foundation’s first ambassador, appointed in November 2020 - Biography

Eugénie Le Sommer was the foundation’s first female ambassador, appointed in May 2021 - Biography

A word from the UEFA Foundation for children Chairman

Dear Friends,

Football is not only the number one sport in the world, but is also a great platform to create solidarity projects for those in need. UEFA has always been one of the leading football organisations in social responsibility and sustainability programmes, and the UEFA Foundation for Children has been doing great work since its launch in 2015.

Even though UEFA is the confederation of European football associations, I am pleased to see that the activities of the UEFA Foundation for Children exceed European borders and reach all around the world.

I would like to encourage all of you to join the activities of the UEFA Foundation for Children and become a supporter of this global initiative. With your support and the solidarity of the European football family, we can achieve even more.

Thank you for your support!

Aleksander Čeferin

Clarence Seedorf

Clarence Seedoorf

Born April 1, 1976 in Suriname, Clarence Seedorf is the most successful footballer in Dutch history and one of the most talented players in football history.

Clarence Seedorf also coached on four continents (South America, Europe, Asia, Africa). Seedorf is one of only six people in the world to have been chosen by Nelson Mandela to be a Legacy Champion.

He is UEFA Global Ambassador for Diversity & Change and a member of the FIFA Diversity Award Jury.

Clarence Seedorf holds an honorary degree in humanities along with the highest civil decorations in Suriname and the Netherlands for his contributions to different fields in both countries. He founded the Champions for Children Foundation in 2004 contributing financially to many projects globally and developing a specific IP to create social impact through sport.

Throughout his career, Clarence Seedorf has used sport and its influence to promote change and create a better world. Seedorf speaks six languages, completed his education in business, sports psychology and NLP with prestigious courses, becoming also assistant professor in sports science at Catholic University in Milan.

Clarence Seedorf has been a blogger for the New York Times and travels the world inspiring the next generations, from youth jails in Brazil to students at Oxford University.

Seedorf is currently the Chairman of Black Impact Foundation, a member of the support committee of Fondazione Umberto Veronesi, which promotes scientific research, and a member of the strategic committee of the UN Science Panel for the Amazon.

Dr. Wladimir Klitschko

Dr. Wladimir Klitschko, born on 25 March 1976 in Kazakhstan, is a Ukrainian former professional boxer and an entrepreneur.

Wladimir Klitschko is not only the combined longest reigning heavyweight boxing champion of all time; he has always seen himself as an entrepreneur. In 2003, he and his brother Vitali started their own business and founded the boxing promotion company K2 Promotions. He also founded the Klitschko Management Group, a sports marketing agency and the Klitschko Foundation, which aims to help children to discover their potential and bring their dreams to life. The foundation has helped more than one million children so far. Together with the University of St. Gallen in Switzerland, he set up the CAS Change and Innovation Management programme and the Competence Center for Intrapreneurship. In 2018, he laid the foundations for spreading his F.A.C.E. the Challenge method in the English-speaking part of the world with the start of cooperation with Harvard Business School.

In 2016, he founded KLITSCHKO Ventures, dedicated to building and maintaining a comprehensive, strategic partner network.

Wladimir Klitschko, who earned his PhD in 2001, sees himself as a pioneer transferring his knowledge and experience from over 25 years as a professional athlete to different areas of life.

Wladimir Klitshchko has been a member of the board of trustees of the UEFA Foundation for Children since 29 November 2018.

Snežana Samardžić-Marković

Ms Snežana Samardžić-Marković is the Director General of Democracy at the Council of Europe since 2002. Under her responsibility, the Directorate General works to help our member states in creating a favourable environment for sustainable democracy and democratic security in Europe.

Three directorates and eight partial agreements under her responsibility are providing guidance, assistance and innovation in the areas of democratic governance, participation and diversity. Her responsibilities include the policy areas of education and youth, local democracy, cultural policies, election assistance, the protection of human dignity, gender equality, children’s rights, and the rights of minorities, work against discrimination, democratic citizenship and democratic responses to crisis situations.

Previously, Ms Samardžić-Marković has held numerous positions in the Serbian Government including as Deputy Director in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for Neighbouring Countries; Assistant Minister of Defence (2005-2007) and Co-President of the Serbia-NATO Defence Reform Group; member of the Foundation Board of WADA, Minister of Youth and Sports (2007-2012) and President of the Fund for Young Talents.

Greg Clarke

Greg Clarke was born in Leicester (England) in 1957 and is married with four adult children.

Over the last 40 years, Greg has worked for and led a variety of blue chip asset-intensive corporations, including group chief executive roles at a FTSE 100 company and an ASX 50 corporation in Sydney. Since 1995 he has held non-executive director positions at various major international organisations, and since 2010 he has chaired various companies and organisations within the plc, sports and government sectors. His career has revolved around planning and delivering multi-billion pound projects with an emphasis on safety and punctual delivery.

From 2010 to 2016, Greg was chairman of the English Football League, before being appointed chairman of The Football Association in September 2016. Prior to that, he was also a director and chairman of Leicester City FC. He has been heavily involved in various initiatives seeking to use the power of football to deliver social change, including (i) acting as an ambassador for Prostate Cancer UK, the English Football League’s official charity partner, (ii) leading the football community’s fundraising initiative to support survivors of the Grenfell Tower disaster, in partnership with Arsenal FC and Chelsea FC (raising £1.5m), and (iii) personally supporting the work of charitable trusts associated with England’s professional clubs.

Aleksander Čeferin

Aleksander Čeferin, born in Ljubljana (Slovenia) on 13 October 1967, is married with three children.

A graduate of Ljubljana University's law faculty, Aleksander Čeferin went on to work for his family's law firm, and developed a special interest in representing professional athletes and sports clubs. He later took over from his father as company director.

He first took a formal interest in local football in 2005 through his work with the executive board of KMN Svea Lesna Litija, one of Slovenia's most successful futsal clubs. A member of the executive committee of amateur side FC Ljubljana Lawyers since 2005, he served as a member at NK Olimpija Ljubljana from 2006-11.

In 2011, Aleksander Čeferin was elected as Football Association of Slovenia president. He also served as a second and third vice-chairman of the UEFA Legal Committee from 2011 to 2016.

Aleksander Čeferin was elected as UEFA's seventh president at the 12th Extraordinary UEFA Congress in Athens in September 2016, and automatically became a vice-president of the world body FIFA.

He came into office with a clear vision for the future, which focussed on the further protection, promotion and development of European football, putting the game first and safeguarding its interests. He pledged to work for unity and dialogue among the European football community. He has also underlined that UEFA must be a “social fair play” body which promotes respect, diversity and inclusion, and shows no tolerance for racism, sexism, homophobia or any form of discrimination.

On November 22, 2017, Aleksander Čeferin, was elected as the new chairman of the UEFA Foundation for Children at the board of trustees’ meeting held at the UEFA’s headquarters in Nyon, Switzerland.

At the 43rd Ordinary UEFA Congress, held on February 7, 2019 in Rome, Italy, he was unanimously re-elected as UEFA President for the period 2019-23.

Kairat Boranbayev

Kairat Boranbayev, born on 22 September 1966, is a Kazakh businessman and president of FC Kairat Almaty.

He graduated from the Kazakh State Institute of Physical Culture  in 1989, and began his career working as a physical education teacher. He then went on to obtain a master’s in law and a doctorate in pedagogy from the Al-Farabi Kazakh National University .

From 1993 to 2000 he worked in various management positions within government and businesses in Kazakhstan.

Between 2000 and 2009 he held an equally diverse range of positions. In 2000, he was appointed executive director of KazTransGas, of which he became deputy director general for external economic relations in April 2002. Meanwhile, from 2000 to 2002, he was commercial director of Intergas Central Asia.

In 2006, he was appointed chairman of the board of KazRosGas, a business which processes  and transports natural gas sourced in Kazakhstan.

He then expanded the scope of his work by getting involved in social activities and promoting healthy lifestyles throughout Kazakhstan, as a result of which he was elected president of the Kostanai Boxing Federation in April 2009.

He became chairman of the supervisory committee of FC Kairat Almaty in 2012 and two years later was appointed CEO of the Almaly asset management company.

In 2015 Mr Boranbayev was appointed as the President of National Paralympic Committee of Kazakhstan.

Kairat Boranbayev has been the 2nd Vice-Chairman of the Fair Play and Social Responsibility Committee since July 2017, and a member of the board of trustees of the UEFA Foundation for Children since 22 November 2017.


Esther Gascón Carbajosa

Esther Gascón was born in Bilbao, a northern Spanish city with a long football tradition. After graduating in law at the University of Deusto in 1994, she completed further studies in sports protocol at the International Protocol School of the Complutense University of Madrid and obtained a master’s degree in sports law from the University of Lleida.

In 1997, she joined the legal department of the Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF), where she was appointed head of protocol. She also managed the office of the RFEF general secretariat before being named director of external relations. She was also part of the RFEF delegations at the UEFA European Football Championships between 2004 and 2016, and at the 2006 and 2010 FIFA World Cups.

Esther Gascón Carbajosa was appointed RFEF director general in 2014 and general secretary in 2016.

She began a renewable four-year term as a member of the UEFA Foundation for Children’s board of trustees on 24 May 2017.

Nathalie Iannetta Sabattier

Born near Paris, France, on 15 May 1972.

Nathalie Iannetta grew up near Paris in a family of Italian immigrants with a keen interest in football. The daughter of a goalkeeper, she quickly developed the same passion for football as her father, grandfathers and uncles. It was no surprise that a girl brought up in such a family should fall in love with the beautiful game, but it was more unusual in French society at the time, where football was very much a man’s game.

Her passion never faded. After studying history and political sciences, followed by two years as an editor at Canal+, the largest pay-TV provider in France and Europe, in 1997 the Canal+ sports department invited her to work on its coverage of the Ligue 1 championship and the forthcoming World Cup, which France was to host in 1998.

Her arrival in an all-male department was seen as a minor revolution in the world of sport on French TV. As well as Ligue 1 matchnights, it was not long before her sports department bosses assigned her to the channel’s flagship programme dedicated to the UEFA club competitions.

Nathalie worked as a sports journalist for 19 years, always for Canal+, before leaving in June 2014 to become special advisor to the French president, François Hollande, on matters relating to sport, engagement, youth and community life. Her duties included coordinating the state authorities’ cooperation with UEFA in relation to the organisation of UEFA EURO 2016 in France.

In the light of that experience, in October 2016 UEFA invited her to become chief advisor to the executive office on social responsibility and relations with the European Commissionm, a position she held until 2018.

Nathalie Iannetta joined the UEFA Foundation for Children’s board of trustees on 24 May 2017. As a partner in a communication company she now splits her time between Nyon and Paris, where her husband and two children live.


Fiona May

Fiona May, born on 12 December 1969 in Slough, England, is a retired Italian champion long jumper who holds 11 medals, including 3 world championship titles, and 2 Olympic silver medals.

Fiona took up athletics at the age of 12 thanks to her Physical Education teacher and coach and went on to become one of the youngest athletes in the British team at the Seoul Olympic Games in 1988.

After studying economics and business management administration, Fiona moved to Italy, married an Italian athlete and ended up competing for Italy, where she still holds the national long-jump record.

From 2013 to 2017, she was a member of the Italian Olympic Committee as an athlete representative. In 2014 the president of the Italian Football Federation appointed her as head of the federation’s integration commission. She is also head of delegation of the Italian women’s Under-19 team.

Fiona May has been a member of the board of trustees of the UEFA Foundation for Children since 24 May 2017. She is also studying for an Executive Master in Sport Governance (MESGO).