By Ken Reed

Through the years, League of Fans has written a lot about how sports participation benefits young people physically, mentally, emotionally, and academically. On a global level, sport is also a valuable tool for protecting children’s safety, advocating for children’s rights, and creating young change agents.

Swiss organization Terre des hommes Lausanne (Tdh) campaigns for the protection of children in and through sport and shows how closely physical activity and well-being are linked with peace and children’s rights.

“Sport is a powerful approach to supporting children to recover from difficult circumstances, develop life skills and become advocates for change. Supporting access to safe sport contributes to our commitment to uphold children’s rights and create an environment where every child can thrive, regardless of their status or past experiences”, says Maria Bray, Tdh Child Protection Expert.

As an example of Tdh’s work, in Egypt and Bangladesh, children participate in football (soccer) tournaments organized by Tdh and take part in awareness-raising activities and discussions on issues such as abuse. In this way, they learn to protect themselves and other children.

Most Tdh sports projects are co-led by children and also involve the children’s families and communities to help achieve a lasting impact.

“Sport can fill the emptiness that some young people suffer from, and not only that, it replaces it with good self-confidence and ambition. A society that cares about sports is a society that can work towards a better future,” says Eslam, a 24-year-old participant in the football activities in Egypt.

To achieve the greatest impact possible,Tdh partners with sport organizations like the IOC, FIBA, Olympic Refuge Foundation and UEFA

Ken Reed, Sports Policy Director, League of Fans


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