New partnership between UNICEF and the Football Federation of Macedonia

Published on 19 Септември, 2022 in News, U21

The United Nations International Children's Emergency Fund (UNICEF) and the Football Federation of Macedonia have announced a new partnership related to World Children's Day, with which they will promote the importance of inclusion, non-discrimination and equality of children and youth in sports and games.

This year, World Children's Day takes place on the same day as the FIFA World Cup kicks off, creating a unique opportunity to use the power of football for the whole world to unite and remember that when it comes to children's rights - there can be only one team.

"No matter which country we support at the World Cup, when it comes to children's rights, we are all on the same team. Every child deserves to feel safe, protected and respected," said UNICEF representative Patricia DiGiovanni. "Sports and games are more than just fun. For children, they create a sense of belonging to a community, an opportunity to share common successes or failures, and learn important life lessons about respect, inclusion, cooperation and leadership."

"We are glad that this year, on the occasion of World Children's Day, in cooperation with UNICEF and before the start of the World Football Championship, we have the opportunity to send a common message about inclusion, non-discrimination and respect for children's rights," said the president of the Football Federation of Macedonia Muamed Sejdini. "The message that our football players will send is a reminder for each of us to respect the rights of children, to give equal opportunities to all children, quality and inclusive education, life in a healthy environment and good mental health. We are trying to make football a place of example where children's rights will be respected and chances will be given to all children, but also a platform from which we will invite other actors in our society to do the same."

The initiative will include a joint multimedia campaign under the motto "We are all on the same team when it comes to children" with football players from the national team and children from different backgrounds, jointly sending positive messages about equality and inclusion to every child. On World Children's Day, on November 20, a friendly football match will be held between football players from the national team and children.

With this partnership, UNICEF and FFM aim to start a public discussion and raise awareness about the right to play of children with disabilities, the inclusion of girls in sports, advocacy for the rights of all children in sports and the importance of sports and play for personal well-being and mental health resilience in children and young people.

For World Children's Day

World Children's Day, held annually on November 20, the anniversary of the adoption of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, highlights critical issues affecting the lives of children and supports the social engagement of children and young people as advocates for their rights.

In previous years, UNICEF in Macedonia successfully organized high-level events in which children took the lead in sessions in cooperation with the Government, key ministries, as well as the Cabinet of the President of North Macedonia.

This year, building on the worldwide excitement surrounding the FIFA World Cup, World Children's Day focuses  communities for attention on play, sport and children's rights.

A National Team