“We are committed to continuing and enlarging our support to our joint project” the First Vice-president of the Ukrainian Association of Football (UAF), Mr Oleg Protasov proclaimed during the visit of Global Programme Director, Hanne Lund Madsen, Cross Cultures in Kiev while stressing the importance of assisting internally displaced children and vulnerable children in the conflict-affected regions.
The achievements of UAF in 2919 have been significant. In total 17 Open Fun Football Festivals of a duration of 5 days have been implemented in the 9 most eastern regions of Ukraine. In addition, 9 festivals have been undertaken thanks to local support. The voluntary engagement is high reaching a total of 731 voluntary sports coaches with 313 being female. The children involved in the Open Fun Football Festivals reached 4.862 of which 47,4% are internally displaced children. Also positive to note is the strong involvement of parents. The after-school and day-to-day sports activities and special sports events reached an impressive number of 157 with 24.414 children involved and 1.617 voluntary coaches engaged.
The representative from the Ministry of Education, Mrs Vladyslava Gancheva underlined that the project is unique of its kind in Ukraine and the Ministry has adopted several of the Cross Cultures manuals and the child-centred approach in the teachers training and in sports activities in schools.
The project Civil Society- and Public Sector cooperation for Reconciliation, Social Integration and Child Protection in Ukraine, is a partnership between Ukrainian Association of Football, All Ukrainian Foundation for Children’s Rights (AUFCR) and Cross Cultures Project Association currently being implemented with support from EU. The overall aim is to strengthen reconciliation, social integration and child protection in Ukraine through a combination of fun sport for children, youth leadership training and cross-sector child protection cooperation between school, sport and police.
The project thus also contributes to the key objectives of the Danish Neighbourhood Programme (DANEP) in the field of peacebuilding and conflict mitigation, decentralization, social cohesion, human rights, civil society strengthening, gender equality and youth leadership.
( See mention in the NANEP News https://um.dk/en/danida-en/countries%20and%20regions/countries-regions/eu-neighbours/)