New projects funded by the UEFA Foundation for Children

Additional funds allocated to 28 projects in support of vulnerable children around the world.

The UEFA Foundation for Children’s board of trustees, led by its new chairman, Aleksander Čeferin, met at the House of European Football in Nyon on 22 November, when they were invited to approve a host of new projects shortlisted following the 2017 call for projects held in August and September this year.

A great many project applications were received. In order to narrow down the selection, a working group of trustees was established to draw up a shortlist that took into account budgetary forecasts and the foundation’s ethics code. On the basis of this shortlist, the board has approved 28 projects, half of which are in Europe.

The new European programmes supported by the UEFA Foundation for Children use sport, and football in particular, to give the most vulnerable a chance to participate in physical activity, which is vital for their healthy physical and psychological development. They convey a wide range of societal values in a way that is relevant to children. Topics such as well-being, self-esteem, tolerance, inclusion of minorities, conflict resolution, learning to live together, education and employability are addressed alongside active training sessions. Four of the new European projects relate to the social integration of child refugees in host communities.

The 14 projects outside Europe give the UEFA Foundation for Children a presence on all continents. These programmes aim to protect children and young adults who are victims of social, economic, political or armed conflicts. In crisis-hit countries, the principles enshrined in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child often fall by the wayside. Through sport and games, a fun, educational approach can be adopted to address social issues such as early marriage, birth control, the importance of school, health, hygiene and well-being.

Nathalie Iannetta, one of the trustees who was part of the working group that shortlisted the projects, said: “All we ever hear about football concerns the big competitions, the transfers and the scandals. At the UEFA Foundation for Children, however, we can see on a daily basis how our sport is a powerful driver of social change. The projects that were sent to us from all over the world are proof that, thanks to football, it is possible to support the social integration of refugees, the empowerment of girls, the faster, more sustainable inclusion of disabled people, and so on. The wide variety of projects that we received is a hallmark of the extraordinary richness and generosity inherent in each of us.”

List of new partners and their projects:

Action for Development, Afghanistan School for Street Children
Association of Football Federations of Azerbaijan, Karabakh Brave Hearts
Baan Dek Foundation, Thailand Football4Good
Football United, Myanmar Football United Myanmar
Fotbal Pro Rozvoj, Czech Republic Football for development in Czech Republic
Foundation of Polish Soccer, Poland Football Film Festival
Fundación Red Deporte y Cooperacíon, Spain Football With No Limits
Game International, Kosovo Game Kosova
Johan Cruyff Foundation, Aruba, Caribbean Cruyff Courts in the Dutch Caribbean
Kick It Out, United Kingdom Diversity in Football Leadership Pathway
Light For The World International, Bolivia Inclusion of children & Youth with disabilities
National Children’s Football Alliance, Belgium Global Peace Game
Oceania Football Confederation, Oceania Just Play
Oltalom Sport Association, Hungary Football for Respect!
Orama Neon Youthorama, Thessaloniki, Greece A ball for all children, a goal for inclusion
Paris Saint-Germain Foundation, France Allez les Filles!
PluSport, Switzerland Goal Plus
Royal Europa 90 Kraainem Football Club, Belgium We welcome young refugees
Ruud Van Nistelrooy Foundation, Netherlands Talent group
SALT Academy, Cambodia Football For Development after-school programme
Soccer in the Streets, Atlanta, United States Refugee Life Skills and Employment Training Soccer Program Atlanta
Sport dans la Ville, France Job dans la Ville
Streetfootballworld, Jordan and Lebanon Empowering refugee and marginalised children
Terre des Hommes, Egypt Protection and social inclusion
Tiempo de Juego Foundation, Columbia Creciendo con el Balón/ Fútbol for Growth
Triangle Génération Humanitaire (TGH), Central African Republic and Republic of the Congo Improving the protection, education and reintegration of street children in Bangui and Brazzaville
UEFA Foundation for Children, Jordane Football at the Zaatari refugee camp
UNIS VERS le SPORT, Senegal UVS – Interational Education Centre