Local partners start to take over

Handing over the project to local partners in Do Son on May 28, 2016 was one of FFAV’s first steps in its project handover process. Having grown together with FFAV in the last nine years, grassroots football in this district has seen great development and meaningful outcomes, contributing to education, promoting peace and diminishing stigmatisation and discrimination against those who are infected/affected by HIV/AIDS.

Up to now, nine clubs have been established and are running in Do Son, with the participation of 368 boys and 368 girls. These children come from all backgrounds: regular children, orphans, vulnerable children and children infected/affected by HIV/AIDS.

The functioning of these clubs have not only created opportunities for disadvantaged or discriminated children to take part in educational activities and play football, but it has also formed an environment of understanding and sharing for mothers and sisters of those who are infected/affected by HIV/AIDS.

The positivity spread by the programs and activities has attracted regular children to join the fun. By bridging the gaps between groups of children who are infected/affected and those who are not with grassroots football as the mediator, FFAV and Do Son have effectively reduced discrimination over the years.

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“This programme is an extraordinary example of how sports can contribute to children’s health and education, and demonstrates that creating football clubs can help to develop social structures in the city,” wrote Wilfried Lemke, Special Advisor to the United Nations Secretary-General on Sport for Development and Peace, in his letter to FFAV after he took part in a Fun Football Festival Do Son in December 2013.

As FFAV phases out from the project in Do Son, the project has been handed over to Do Son Women’s Union. Do Son pledges to do everything in its ability to maintain activities for the children here.

They will continue to organise summer activities, football tournaments and life skills activities. The clubs will encourage participation and human resources from sponsors, businesses and parents. They also wish to be kept up to date with news from FFAV as well as receive training to maintain a sustainable project for a more positive community.

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