CAFE week of action: giving disabled football fans equal access to live football matches

Half of Europe's 100 million disabled people have never attended a live sports event. From 7–15 March, CAFE (the Centre for Access to Football in Europe) is staging a week of action to improve access and inclusion for disabled people across all of UEFA's 55 member associations.

CAFE week of action: giving disabled football fans equal access to live football matches
CAFE week of action: giving disabled football fans equal access to live football matches ©UEFA.com

WHAT IS CAFE?

UEFA partner CAFE exists to give #TotalAccess to all football fans. Set up in 2009, CAFE is funded by UEFA to help change the lives of disabled people across Europe through the unique power of football – the world's most popular sport.

CAFE supports the improvement of accessible facilities and services at stadiums, raises further awareness around access and inclusion within the game, offers advice to disabled football fans and establishes networks of disabled supporter groups.

This year, UEFA and CAFE combined to create a new video highlighting the crucial work undertaken to help more disabled fans attend live football matches.

DON'T SOME STADIUMS ALREADY PROVIDE WHEELCHAIR SPACES?

Clubs can cater for the needs of disabled people
Clubs can cater for the needs of disabled people©CAFE

Yes, but that's not enough. It is not just about adding more wheelchair spaces inside stadiums. CAFE focuses on creating clear sightlines for disabled supporters, providing audio-descriptive commentary for partially sighted and blind fans, and ensuring facilities and amenities can cater for the specific needs of differently disabled people.

There is still work to do. Together, we are on a journey towards #TotalAccess. It is vital that disabled people are part of that journey and that their voices are heard.

Together, and taking important learnings from previous tournaments, we will ensure that UEFA EURO 2020 is the most accessible tournament we have ever staged.

HOW CAN PEOPLE SUPPORT CAFE’S WEEK OF ACTION?

The CAFE Week of Action runs from 7–15 March, celebrating the work taking place across Europe to improve access and inclusion.

Active across UEFA's 55 member associations, CAFE is working towards ensuring disabled people can take their rightful places among their peers within football – from the grassroots to the boardrooms – as spectators, players, coaches, administrators, volunteers, and decision makers.