Bosnian children play football with UNICEF Ambassador Edin Dzeko before the World Cup
SARAJEVO, 24 May 2014 - Thousands of children from all over Bosnia and Herzegovina, including the areas affected by the worst flooding in over a hundred years gathered in Sarajevo this weekend. They wanted to wish good luck to the Bosnian National Football Team, nicknamed „The Dragons“, before their departure to the World Cup 2014 in Brazil.
The Football Team wished that a match with 100 boys and girls with and without disabilities be their official sending-off to the World Cup in Brazil. Children were more than happy to oblige, beating them 2:0!
Edin Džeko - UNICEF ambassador and his teammates wanted to celebrate with children their first placement to the World Cup in history. They were also eager to raise awareness about the difficulties children face in emergencies, especially children with dissabilities.
While big and little Dragons weighed against each other on the pitch, the children on the stands wrote messages for the children in the flooded towns who could not come to watch the game.
"Dear friends, I am sorry you could not be with us today. We will support our Dragons and they will help you rebuild your houses“, reads one of the massages from children on the stands for the children in the affected areas.
A group of girls and boys leaving the stadium after the match was pleased with the result and delighted with the sneakers that Edin Džeko gave them. Answering the question who won, they answer in unison: “We did!” showing proudly the gift they received from the footballer whose name could be read on many jerseys children wore today, along with the names of other National Team players.
"Children are our most honest supporters and it was a shared wish of all National Team members to celebrate our departure for the World Cup with them. With this match we wanted to raise awareness about the problems faced by children with disabilities. Our aim was to bring smiles to their little faces and carry that image in our hearts, as our driving force in Brazil”, said Emir Spahić, the Captain of the B-H National Team.
Proving that all children have equal opportunities and rights, the youngest Bosnians have passed on the positive energy to their favorite team in the best possible way.
Balkan floods 2014
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Youth sport games in child-friendly spaces: “Give Me Your Hand, Together We Will Not Be Lonely”