20 April 2016 – UK-based charity Football for Peace Global hosted President Joko Widodo in East London to showcase Educational Football Diplomacy toolkits which include youth leadership programmes using the power of football to bring together young people from different backgrounds, religions and ethnicities.
In total, 60 young people from Newham, London as well as 3 Football for Peace Global Ambassadors from Birmingham participated in the daylong workshop at Chobham Academy, Newham. President Joko Widodo was also accompanied by UK government officials to meet with the young people and members of Football for Peace Global.
Providing a space for social integration, Football for Peace’s young leadership programme empowers young people with tangible skills they can use to break down social barriers and inspire understanding to ultimately become leaders and ambassadors for peace themselves.
As part of today’s event Football for Peace also announced the launch of its brand new website, a resource hub for all the initiatives it runs throughout the UK and internationally as well as contact information for all those that want to take part.
President Jokowi of Indonesia, said:
“Football for Peace is a diplomatic way of football to be started from the children,”
“Children are reconciled, glued to do here with the football. I wonder what we see. They are from several schools, from several areas that are here, and gathered here,”
Asked whether it will build a similar soccer schools in Indonesia, President Jokowi said he would see. “I think this is great, let’s see,”.
Jayraj Jadeja, CEO of Football for Peace, said:
“Today’s event demonstrates the power of football to bring people from diverse backgrounds together, from young people at a grass roots community level all the way up to leaders on the world stage.
“Through promoting our core values of integration, equality and diversity, we aim to equip young people with the confidence and skills to inspire positive social change not only in London and the UK, but also Indonesia and across the world”.
Diplomatic sports movement Football for Peace aims to promote dialogue as a means to inspiring understanding among different cultures, faiths and nationalities. The organisation’s work has attracted support from high profile dignitaries including Prince William and numerous football stars including Pele, Ronaldhino, Alexis Sanchez and many others.
Kashif Siddiqi, Founder and International footballer commented:
“Football for Peace harnesses the ability of sport to transcend borders, languages and cultural divides, uniting people who might otherwise have stood on opposite sides of the track.”
Football for Peace is due to roll out its “City for Peace” young leadership programme in cities across the UK later in 2016. The charity has also staged high profile international peace matches including one in London in 2015, supported by HRH Prince Ali, which saw players from the UK and Afghanistan international teams come together to play on one team.