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Mine victims to benefit from UEFA EURO 2008™ fundraising drive

22-09-2008 News Release 08/175

The UEFA EURO 2008™ ‘Score for the Red Cross’ campaign raised half a million euros which will be used to help mine victims in Afghanistan rebuild their lives.

June's UEFA EURO 2008™ tournament in Austria and Switzerland not only offered spectators exciting football; it also provided them with a chance to contribute towards important humanitarian activities. Through the'Score for the Red Cross'campaign run jointly by UEFA and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) fans could support their national teams while also providing funds to help landmine victims in Afghanistan walk again and play an active role in society. Donations will also support activities of 16 of the participating National Red Cross and Red Crescent societies.

UEFA pledged EUR 4,000 for each actual goal scored during the tournament. There were 77 goals resulting in a total donation of EUR 308,000. In addition, fans contributed more than EUR 200,000 via the web-based campaign where they were able to purchase virtual goals for their favourite teams and help them win the title of most charitable team. Germany won the fundraising competition and showed their humanitarian commitment by donating the largest amount, followed by Spain and the Netherlands.

“I would like to thank football fans for their generous support and the solidarity they showed with mine victims, and congratulate Germany on their fine win,” said UEFA’s director of communications, William Gaillard. “Thanks also to the Austrian FA, Swiss Tourism and TEAM, who were among the many institutions which joined the fans in scoring for the Red Cross and made significant pledges to help make a difference.”

In addition to emergency treatment, victims of landmines require years of rehabilitation and assistance to gain self sufficiency. Recognising this need, the ICRC also provides vocational training and help getting a job.

“The needs are great in Afghanistan,” said Alberto Cairo, head of the ICRC's programme for the war-disabled in Afghanistan. ”Sadly, the number of people who have lost limbs or suffered other injuries as a consequence of landmines is huge. Out of the 15,000 people who seek assistance at our limb fitting centre each year, over 3,500 will be helped thanks to the generosity of football fans.”

  For further information, you can contact:
  Michelle Rockwell, Geneva, tel: +41 79 251 93 11
  UEFA Media Services, tel: +41 848 04 27 27
  For more information on the ICRC in Afghanistan, visit: