The words Hate, Violence and Conflict may have tumbled to the ground in a footballing challenge involving His Royal Highness Prince William, the Duke of Cambridge recently on November 22, 2018, but the message was received clearly by those attending a Peace Tournament to launch Football for Peace’s (FfP) #FootballSavesLives initiative.
This latest UK Cities for Peace initiative from the international diplomatic charity pledges to train 500 Young Peace Leaders by 2020. The launch event which took place at the Copper Box Arena London, brought together FfP footballing ambassadors, world-class soccer stars Mesut Ozil, Louis Saha, Bacary Sagna, Mamadou Sakho, Carlton Cole, Cherno Samba, Avram Gran, as well as newly trained Young Peace Leaders.
The tournament honoured the Young Peace Leaders from across the UK who graduated from the City for Peace initiative this year. Through this programme, FfP works in conjunction with local councils, football clubs and schools to train young people aged 15-18 in how to unite their communities on and off the pitch, from running local football tournaments to organising classroom workshops to discuss the issues currently dividing their communities.
Syncoms, a global digital marketing and web-to-print technology cooperation joined forces with EFI, a world leader in customer-focused digital printing innovation to co-sponsor the event.
Syncoms’ VP of Print and Technology, Ali Ridha Jaffar, says: “This was an excellent example of how high quality, large format print can be used to support creative thinking and help bring communications and marketing campaigns to life.
“Football for Peace shows how, through understanding and people working together, negative, often destructive issues can be addressed. I am delighted that the Duke of Cambridge was able to partake in the program, which will serve as a real inspiration for present and future Peace Leaders.”
EFI VP of Europe sales, Paul Cripps, says: “We’re thrilled to have been a part of Football for Peace with this latest campaign and launch event. With EFI VUTEk superwide digital inkjet printers, we were able to produce the iconic ‘Wall of Division’ as well as other large format items.”
A highlight of the event featured Prince William, some of the soccer stars and Peace Leaders, simultaneously kicking footballs at a giant wall of stacked word boxes to reveal the slogan, Uniting The World Through Football.
The Duke of Cambridge addressed attendees saying: "All of you Young Peace Leaders here today have worked together, played together and learned to confront pre-conceptions, stereotypes and negative ideologies.
"You are our future — metaphorically and literally breaking down walls."