As the world gears up for Qatar 2022, new football-themed education toolkit aims to build stronger communities

Rwanda. Ensuring children's right to education with support from EAC

Children at the GS Gasaka School in Rwanda, funded by a partnership between Education Above All Foundation and UNHCR, play football at a nearby sports field.  © UNHCR/PADDY DOWLING

UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, Education Above All Foundation (EAA) and the Generation Amazing Foundation (GA) have announced a collaboration to develop a “Football 4 Development Playbook” (F4DP), a new toolkit that aims to support some of the world’s most vulnerable, forcibly displaced children.

The F4DP toolkit is a practical guide that uses football-themed physical games, activities, and training drills to teach and develop life-skills for children like teamwork, resilience, discipline, and social integration.  

It aims to improve social inclusion, cohesion and wellbeing and will be used in existing UNHCR and EAA projects that support out-of-school children at the primary level, as well as displaced populations, in Chad, Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda.

The partnership to develop the F4DP tool was signed in Geneva by the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, Filippo Grandi, the Secretary General of the Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy and Chairman of the Generation Amazing Foundation, H.E. Hassan Al Thawadi and the CEO of Education Above All (EAA), Fahad Al-Sulaiti.

“This project aims to harness the transformative power of football, to empower refugee children and youth and provide them with life-long skills that can help them and their local host communities,” said Grandi. 

The Generation Amazing Foundation, a FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ legacy initiative, which specialises in creating football for social change programmes, is developing the materials in collaboration with UNHCR to build upon its existing “Sports for Protection” toolkit.

Al Thawadi said: “Generation Amazing’s mission is to ensure that the heart and soul of football reaches people that need it the most. UNHCR and EAA are engaged with and assisting refugee communities around the world and we are pleased to contribute to this critical work through this partnership. Football (and sport) alone can’t change the world, but ensuring that its incredible power to inspire and unite is harnessed is a responsibility we must deliver on, especially in places where populations battle with innumerable obstacles and challenges.”

Improved mental agility, attention span, and decision-making, alongside self-confidence, self-sufficiency and resilience are just some of the associated advantages of sports, all vital skills for children and young people, particularly those who have been forcibly displaced and living in refugee camps or otherwise disadvantaged. 

“Although education is a human right, refugee communities host some of the largest out-of-school child populations,” said EAA’s Al-Sulaiti. “We are all too aware of the role well designed sports interventions can play within existing education programmes in reaching the most marginalised children to improve multiple areas of development. We look forward to welcoming these new football-focused materials to better help us ensure that when it comes to education, no child is left behind.” 

 

Notes to editors:

UNHCR: UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, is a global organization dedicated to saving lives, protecting rights and building a better future for people forced to flee their homes because of conflict and persecution. We deliver life-saving assistance such as shelter, food and water, help safeguard fundamental human rights, and develop solutions that ensure people have a safe place to call home. We work in over 130 countries, using our expertise to protect and care for millions of people.

Education Above All (EAA) Foundation: The Education Above All (EAA) Foundation is a global foundation established in 2012 by Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser. EAA aims to transform lives through education. We believe that education is the single most effective means of reducing poverty, creating peaceful and just societies, unlocking the full potential of every child and youth, and creating the right conditions to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
 
Through our multi-sectoral approach, unique financing models, focus on innovation as a tool for social good, and partnerships, we aim to bringing hope and real opportunities to the lives of impoverished and marginalised boys and girls.
 
EAA is comprised of four programmes and sections: Educate A Child (EAC), Al Fakhoora, Reach Out To Asia (ROTA), Protect Education in Insecurity and Conflict (PEIC), and Innovation Development (ID). 

Generation Amazing Foundation (GA): The Generation Amazing Foundation (GA) is the human and social legacy programme initiated in 2010 during Qatar’s successful bid for the 2022 FIFA World Cup™. We operate in alignment with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, promoting inclusion and gender equality in our football for development programme. Our unique methodology teaches life skills, including communication, leadership, teamwork and organization. We have reached over 755,000 youth since 2010 and are active in countries around the world, including Qatar, India, Jordan, Iraq, Lebanon, Oman, Myanmar, Argentina, Nepal, Oman, Pakistan, the Philippines, Rwanda and Uganda. We aim to reach 1 million beneficiaries by the end of 2022 through the inspiring power of football and working in collaboration with key local and global partners. Through our joint programme with UNHCR and EAA, we will broaden our scope of interaction with the African continent by including two new countries - Kenya and Chad, in addition to strengthening our footprint and programmes in Rwanda and Uganda. The joint programme will positively raise human capital and psychosocial awareness through football for development interventions.
 

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