On June 9-14, the International Children’s Games (ICG) that united more than 1500 athletes, coaches and guests from 29 countries took place in Ufa.
For the first time, a special Football for Friendship match was held under the auspices of the International Children’s Games. Young Ambassadors (all participants acquire such status) of the Football for Friendship - an International Social Programme for Children of Gazprom PJSC had the privilege to represent it to participants and guests of the Games, as well as the Russian and foreign reporters.
With the support of Gazprom EP International, the foreign projects operator of Gazprom PJSC, Young Ambassadors came to Ufa from the countries of operation of the Company: Bolivia, the Netherlands and India, as well as Gerard Timmers, coach of the Dutch team Alkmaar. While representing interests of Gazprom PJSC on three continents, Gazprom EP International seeks to promote the international communication and cultural exchange at different levels, provides children from different countries with an opportunity to know each other better and make friends.
At the ICG opening ceremony, the Young Ambassadors invited Young athletes to take part in the Football for Friendship match. Registration for the match was open in the Football for Friendship House during several days. Members of two teams were selected from 96 applications through an open drawing procedure, the teams were named after the Football for Friendship mascots, Freddie dog and Freida cat.
The Football for Friendship match crowned a series of contested matches of the ICG and introduced an atmosphere of warmth and true friendship once again uniting children from different parts of the world.
At the closing ceremony of the 53rd Summer International Children’s Games in Ufa, the Young Football for Friendship Ambassadors awarded the participants with trophies For Commitment to the Nine Values. The judges helped to select those who most clearly demonstrated commitment to such values as friendship, equality, fairness, health, peace, devotion, victory, traditions, and honor.
“Dignity, strength of character, kindness must be the basis of the personality of every human, and it would be great if they were accepted as the norms of conduct. Unfortunately, such qualities are rare. We would like to draw special attention to showing the inner strength and humanity, and how important it is. So that those who have received this award remember it, as well as everyone who was united by the ICG. Once again with the support of Gazprom International we got a chance to remind a large international audience about the Nine Values,” says Jennifer Chavez Suarez, a Young Ambassador from Bolivia.
The International Children's Games are sport contests held under the auspices of the International Olympic Committee between the 12-15-year-olds. In 2019, the Summer ICG were held in Ufa from 9 to 14 July. For the first time in history of the International Children’s Games uniting young athletes from 29 countries of the world, a football match was organized with participation of the Young Ambassadors of the Football for Friendship, the International Social Programme for Children of Gazprom PJSC. Teams were formed from the participants of the International Children's Games from different countries. Coaches were 14-16-year-olds.
The International Children’s Social Programme Football for Friendship has been organized by Gazprom PJSC since 2013. Participants of the programme, Young players and Young Journalists, are girls and boys aged 12, including those with disabilities. United in the International Teams of Friendship to play in the Football for Friendship World Championship, Young Players represent different countries and cultures. Young Journalists cover the events of the programme in the International Children’s Press Center. This way, they learn to communicate with each other in the language of friendship, but also to talk about what a world without war and discrimination could be.