Football promotes peace and development, says Dr. Diouf
Cooperation Agreement FAO-Confederation of African Football
6 March, 2008, Rome/Cairo – "FAO has always set great store by the power of sport in general, and professional football in particular, as a tool for peace and development and a means to mobilise political will and resources in the fight against global hunger."
Against this backdrop, FAO’s Director-General Dr. Jacques Diouf yesterday welcomed the signing of a cooperation agreement beween the Organisation he heads and the Confederation of African Football (CAF).
Mr. Hayatou, President of the CAF, also hailed the partnership, which he said confirms the support that the CAF has been giving to United Nations organisations in their struggle against the scourges that afflict the African continent and threaten humanity.
Under the terms of the agreement, the CAF undertakes to do its best to promote a series of initiatives together with FAO, involving its members, affiliated football clubs and professional football players. The aim is to increase public awareness on issues of food security and the fight against hunger and poverty.
The CAF will support solidarity campaigns mounted by FAO, including a number of initiatives such as national or regional Food Security Programmes, TeleFood projects and cultural and sporting events held to promote development of agriculture, nutrition and the environment.
For its part, FAO undertakes to support initiatives and events launched in common agreement with the CAF. It has pledged to provide all necessary information materials and to increase the profile of this parternship through the public initiatives and major events that it organises from time to time on themes related to cooperation for development and food security.
With this strategy, the two organisations hope that football will help promote humanitarian causes, with the ultimate goal of improving living conditions for the world’s poorest people.
Top football players already helping FAO achieve these objectives include the former star of Juventus and Inter, Italy’s Roberto Baggio and Spain’s Raúl Gonzalez, captain of Real Madrid. Both are Goodwill Ambassadors for FAO.
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