UNICEF and AFFA team up to promote girls participation in Azerbaijan
BAKU, April 20, 2011 - UNICEF and the Azerbaijan Federation of Football Associations (AFFA), the governing soccer body in the country, officially kick off their partnership campaign today by signing a joint Memorandum of Understanding. The joint work will harness the power of football in order to increase participation of excluded and disadvantaged girls and boys in sport, to promote awareness of healthy life styles, and impart life skills to children and young people, as well as to promote girls' participation in sport nationwide.
“We believe in the power of football. Sport is a particularly good way of reaching out to girls as well as boys, and can provide them with opportunities to connect with others socially, something that many girls are not able to do because of the restrictions they face as females,” said Mark Hereward, UNICEF Representative in Azerbaijan. “When girls are given the chance to take part in sport, they can challenge the stereotypes that label them as less able than boys. Sport, like education, can help girls become equal players in society.”
“AFFA is pleased to cooperate with UNICEF through a number of different activities and events that will both raise the visibility and popularity of football and contribute to awareness of healthy life-styles among youth. Definitely, it will also contribute to attracting girls to play football,” said Elkhan Mamedov, the General Secretary of AFFA. “This partnership is important to AFFA, as it is not only about football, but sport and development in general.”