Saying Yes For Children
Tuesday, 11 June 2002
A global partnership between FIFA and UNICEF to promote children's rights.
The current FIFA World Cup in Korea/Japan is the first to be dedicated to a humanitarian cause.
The world's major football event is committed to children under the banner "Say Yes to Children", under a special partnership between world football's governing body FIFA and UNICEF, the United Nations Children's Fund.
The partnership between FIFA and UNICEF aims to promote and protect the right of all children to healthy recreation and quality primary education.
During World Cup matches and in television spots featuring top footballers, every football fan in the world is being encouraged to act on behalf of children. In addition, children are being given a prime role at each match, accompanying each player on to the pitch in a symbolic action reminding football enthusiasts that they have a major role to play in building a world fit for children.
A number of other activities are taking place around the world during the World Cup, involving the world's national football associations and major football personalities.
"It is not the first time that UNICEF and football have joined forces," says UNICEF Executive Director Carol Bellamy. "The game has been helping us to 'Kick Polio out of Africa’, and several of our Goodwill Ambassadors are current or former football stars who are working tirelessly to build a world fit for children."
The "Say Yes to Children" campaign was introduced last year. Under the programme, people are being asked to support ten principles to protect the lives of children around the world. The ten imperatives for children are to:
1. Ensure that no child is left out
2. Put children first and make certain their rights are respected
3. Care for every child and ensure each child has the best possible start in life
4. Fight HIV/AIDS
5. Stop harming and exploiting children
6. Listen to children
7. Educate every child
8. Protect children from war
9. Protect the earth for children, and
10. Fight poverty
UNICEF's other partnerships in football include a relationship with Manchester United FC to raise £1m (€1.55m) for children, and its programmes in Honduras and Kenya have used the game to educate young men about HIV/AIDS.