The fight against discrimination will be the focus at this week's UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League matches as part of the 2011 FARE Action Weeks.
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This week sees a new round of UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League matches across Europe – and the fight against discrimination will be the focus at stadiums throughout the continent as UEFA gives its full support to Europe's biggest anti-discrimination campaign which kicked off last week.
Forty matches across UEFA's prestigious club competitions will be dedicated to the governing body's own Unite Against Racism initiative. A 30-second "No to Racism" giant screen advert will be shown and tannoy announcements will be made before each game. Every team will be accompanied onto the pitch by children wearing Unite Against Racism T-shirts and the captains will be asked to don a Unite Against Racism branded armband. The activities will be witnessed by thousands of fans in the stadiums and millions more on television.
These are just some of the 2,000 activities taking place during the FARE Action Weeks in more than 42 different countries around Europe under the theme of Football People. The activities involve fans, clubs, national associations, ethnic minority groups and youth organisations. Grants from the Football Against Racism in Europe (FARE) network were offered to over 100 grassroots initiatives thanks to UEFA's support.
UEFA President Michel Platini spoke of his backing for the FARE Action Weeks: "I am proud to be part of the Football People campaign which highlights UEFA's commitment to tackling discrimination in football in partnership with the FARE network. For over ten years, we have worked side by side with the FARE network on what is a central pillar in European football and we will continue to strive towards a respect for diversity in the game."
The executive director of FARE, Piara Powar, said: "The Football People Action Weeks unite community groups, fans, small clubs and top UEFA club competitions. Together we are sending out a strong and decisive message against discrimination."
The 2011 FARE Action Weeks run from 12 to 25 October.