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- In three Vietnamese provinces, the UEFA Foundation for Children is working with the Blue Dragon Children's Foundation to transform children's lives through sport.
- 1,585 highly-disadvantaged kids are benefitting from sports and educational activities.
- UEFA Foundation: Five years of real-life impact
Children from disadvantaged backgrounds across Vietnam are frequently victims of abuse, forced labour and sex trafficking. Many live on the streets of Hanoi, fleeing violence or extreme poverty to search for work in the capital.
Key player: The Blue Dragon Children's Foundation
In early 2020, the UEFA Foundation for Children teamed up with the Blue Dragon Children's Foundation, which has been using sport as a catalyst to change the lives of Vietnamese street children for 17 years.
Since the start of this year, the Foundation has worked with the Blue Dragon Children's Foundation in three Vietnamese provinces to give 1,585 highly-disadvantaged children easier access to sports and recreational activities.
Encouraging children to play football not only fosters a healthier lifestyle. It also breaks the cycle of poverty which sees kids leave home to enter the job market when they are far too young, frequently depriving them of the right to an education. Workshops organised around sporting activities help to nurture life and work skills, including communication and teamwork, offering a pathway to a better life.
There are also lessons on child rights for 250 adult community members, helping them to recognise early warning signs of child labour and human trafficking.
Expert's verdict: Luís Figo
"Every child should have the opportunity to enjoy his or her childhood, without the threat of being trafficked for the illegal and repulsive gains of others.
"I would like to praise the sterling work being undertaken by the UEFA Foundation for Children and the Blue Dragon Children's Foundation in order to try and tackle the root causes of child poverty and save street children from a life of misery."