FC Barcelona and Laureus Foundation are collaborating to promote sport as an instrument for social change
Edwin Moses, President of Laureus, Sandro Rosell, President of Fútbol Club Barcelona, and Gabriel Masfurroll, President of the Fundación Laureus España, inaugurated the Foundation’s annual convention.
“We are proud to be able to put Barça at the service of the people most in need, especially children. And we are doing that by using sport, all of its values and its powerful force to unite people, as has always been highlighted by Nelson Mandela, Patron of Laureus”, said the president of FC Barcelona, Sandro Rosell
The Laureus Sport for Good Foundation is committed to the use of sport as an instrument for improving the lives of young people. The members of the Laureus Academy offer their own time to volunteer as ambassadors for the Laureus Foundation. Since its creation, Laureus has raised 55 million euros to support sports projects all around the world.
FC Barcelona won the Laureus Team of the Year Award in 2011, and the city of Barcelona hosted the Awards in both 2006 and 2007. The year 2012 is especially significant because it is the 20th anniversary of the successful hosting of the Olympics and Paralympics in 1992.
The President of Laureus, Dr. Edwin Moses, along with the President of FC Barcelona, Mr. Sandro Rosell, the vice president of FC Barcelona Carles Vilarrubí and the President of the Fundación Laureus España, Gabriel Masfurroll inaugurated today the annual convention of the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation on the facilities of Fútbol Club Barcelona. The Laureus Global Summit brings together representatives of more than 100 international sports projects in communities supported by Laureus. In Barcelona, the leaders of projects in some 34 countries have been joined by members of the Laureus Academy and representatives of other organisations to share their knowledge and innovation in the area of youth development through sport.
Accompanying Edwin Moses this year among the Members of the Laureus Academy are Olympic swimming legend Mark Spitz, five times Tour de France winner Miguel Indurain, boxer Marvelous Marvin Hagler, British paralympian Tanni Grey-Thompson, downhill skier Franz Klammer and rugby giants Sean Fitzpatrick, Morné du Plessis and Hugo Porta.
The Laureus Sport for Good Foundation and F.C. Barcelona will be collaborating in the future on projects to improve the education, health and social integration of underprivileged communities. There are several Laureus Foundation projects in Spain, such as “Jóvenes Atletas” with the Special Olympics to promote sport among handicapped people and “Para Nuestros Héroes” with the Fundación Alex, which provides grants to organisations to promote adapted sport.
Sandro Rosell, President of FC Barcelona, said that “we are proud to be able to put Barça at the service of the people most in need, especially children. And we are doing that by using sport, all of its values and its powerful force to unite people, as has always been highlighted by Nelson Mandela, Patron of Laureus”.
Edwin Moses, meanwhile, added that 'this is a unique meeting of experts in the use of sport as an instrument for social change. The projects supported by Laureus around the world show how sport can have a positive influence on young people. At Laureus we experience that impact all year round, with experiences with young people that have left youth gangs, found work and improved their physical and intellectual performances. The aim of this convention is to pool these practices to create a strong global network of Laureus Sport for Good Foundation projects, a space where we can share ideas, knowledge and good methodology. All of this has a greater impact on children and communities, because the projects can learn from the processes that exist in other countries. With the problems of the current situation, we should double our efforts to help young people. That is why I am delighted to be able to attend such an important event in Barcelona and I would like to thank Mr. Sandro Rosell and all the FC Barcelona team for their support”.
At the moment, the Fundación Laureus España is promoting projects to protect hundreds of young people from social exclusion. Gabriel Masfurroll, its President, said he feels 'very satisfied with all the support received in Spain by the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation to promote activities that help children and people with different capacities through sport. Specifically in the current situation, the focus of Laureus España is crucial for helping a country that has always been active in this fight”.
At midday, the members of the Laureus Academy will be visiting Llars Mundet, where the Special Olympics project is going on with the involvement of representatives of international Laureus projects.