UNICEF and FFU made children’s football dreams come true
Children with disabilities and orphans opened friendly match between the national teams of Ukraine and Cameroon
2 June 2013, Кyiv – Friendly match between teams of Ukraine and Cameroon was dedicated to the International Children’s Day due to the joint initiative of the United Nations Children’s Fund ( UNICEF) and Football Federation of Ukraine (FFU). A long-cherished football dream of 38 vulnerable children has been fulfilled. They went out at the football pitch of NSK “Olimpiyskiy” to open the match together with players of national teams and held flags during the national anthems of both countries. Amongst the children there were HIV-affected children, children with disabilities, orphans, children-refugees and children from crisis families. Around 25 000 people came to watch the game at the stadium and around 5 million people watched the game on TV.
The aim of the initiative is to draw society’s attention to the urgency of children’s rights protection, in particular to the most vulnerable children, and to the importance of sport and football in the rehabilitation process of these children. Before the match children had visited the UN in Ukraine being greeted there by UNICEF Ukraine Representative Yukie Mokuo. Also they got acquainted and had a chance to take autographs from music band “SKAY”.
UNICEF Ukraine Representative Yukie Mokuo addressed children noting: “UNICEF is the organization that works all around the world in order to make lives of children better. We want every child to be surrounded by love, care and attention. I am sure that today both big and little winners will go out at the field!”
There are 8 million children in Ukraine, 165 thousand of whom are children with disabilities, nearly 100 thousand children live or work in the streets and almost 95 thousand live in institutions. Ukraine ratified Convention on the Rights of the Child in 1991. This Convention is the agreement between countries where it is defined in what ways state and society of each country have to take care of children. Every child is born with equal rights to health, education and development, each one among them dreams about parental care and solicitude. Let’s unite for children!