The FIFA Diversity Award was set-up with the aim of recognising an outstanding organisation, group initiative or personality that is standing up for diversity and anti-discrimination in football. Since 2016, FIFA have assessed 100 projects per year, six of which are then presented to a jury who then shortlist three organisations, initiatives or individuals who are best placed to win the FIFA Diversity Award. Anti-racism educational charity, Show Racism the Red Card, are delighted to announce that they have made the final three who will now be put forward to a jury with the winner of the award being announced at the awards ceremony in London on Sunday 23rd September.
This year’s jury is composed of Ryan Atkin (English referee), Alexandra Haas Paciuc (President of CONAPRED), Jefinho (Brazilian international of blind football, 5-a-side), Mary McVeigh Connor (Soccer Without Borders, winner of the 2017 FIFA Diversity Award), Maria Sol Muñoz (Ecuadorian member of the FIFA Council), Lydia Nsekera (Burundian member of the FIFA Council), Khalida Popal (FIFA Legend, former Afghan player, Programme & Event Director for the Afghanistan women’s national team), Jaiyah Saelua (American Samoa international), Clarence Seedorf (FIFA Legend, four-time UEFA Champions League winner, former Dutch international), Tokyo Sexwale (South African anti-apartheid activist) and Abby Wambach (FIFA Women’s World Cup™ winner for the USA).
Ged Grebby, Show Racism the Red Card Chief Executive said;
"Show Racism the Red Card are honoured to have been shortlisted for the FIFA Diversity Award 2018. Using the power of football and professional footballers to combat racism in society has been our key mission statement since 1996 and it is fantastic to be recognised for this work on the World stage. At a time when racism is on the rise throughout the world, we need more anti-racism initiatives and support. This nomination can only help us increase our profile and help get the anti-racism message to an even wider audience. We wish all the other shortlisted projects all the best and look forward to the ceremony.”
Tony Higgins, FIFPro, said;
“FIFPro were partners of Show Racism the Red Card for many years and during that partnership we saw at first hand the fantastic work done by the campaign both in the UK and internationally. The concentration of the work with children and young people is essential if we are to confront (both in football and society) many of the issues that arise from racism and other forms of discrimination. We are delighted that Show Racism the Red Card have recognised for the work they do and we wish them all the best for the awards ceremony.”
Fraser Wishart, Chief Executive Scotland PFA, said;
“As long-term supporters of Show Racism the Red Card in Scotland we see the work undertaken by the organisation on a daily basis. In the background the education programmes in schools and with young people are vital to changing attitudes to the many discrimination issues being addressed. In addition, using the public profile of professional football, SRTRC raises awareness of such issues by cleverly using players as role models with their attendance at educational events and PR events within the Fortnight of Action. The Red Card brand has become synonymous with the fight against racism and we wholeheartedly back its nomination for this award.”
Gordon Taylor OBE, PFA Chief Executive, said;
“As Honorary President of FIFPro and former President I can honestly say that SRtRC have been world class in their organisation, their coverage of anti-racism and discrimination at all levels of the game and society. Their ability to link and engage with children on their education in this area via artwork and poetry has shown excellent results and worthy of the highest praise.”
Professional football clubs have been long-term supporters of Show Racism the Red Card and have sent us some messages of support.
“For SRtRC to be recognised by FIFA and short-listed for this award is a fantastic achievement. As an organisation that has grown and developed from humble beginnings, they are a leader in the field of diversity and inclusion and our football club is so proud to have been working with them for many years. Their ground-breaking work in schools and with young people has delivered tangible results and now more than ever, our society needs them and their work.”
Newcastle United FC;
“We would like to congratulate Show Racism the Red Card on being shortlisted for such a prestigious award. We are immensely proud to support and work alongside the charity’s outstanding team in the community, helping to project a clear message that football is for everyone. Show Racism the Red Card would be worthy recipients of the FIFA Diversity Award 2018 and we would like to wish the team all the very best in the running for the final award.”
Carlisle United FC;
“Congratulations to all at Show Racism the Red Card, well deserved. Carlisle United FC Community Sports Trust have been hosting SRtRC events for over 10 years now, during this time the SRtRC team have been involved with 100s of boys and girls in the Carlisle area, relaying and enforcing the message that racism in any shape or form is totally unacceptable. The workshops are informative, fun, interactive and professional, staff are very caring and work in a friendly and sensitive manner.”
Southend United FC;
“Southend United and SRtRC have worked in partnership for a number of years now. Through this partnership we have educated over 1000 children about racism, not just in football, but in everyday life. The sessions use the hook of the football club and players to also help engage these children. Players and management take part in a Q&A every year that is related to what the children have learnt in previous workshops. It is good for these children to then relate to professional players, ex-players provided by SRtRC and experts in this field. We are looking forward to continuing this relationship with SRtRC and feel they would be worthy winners of this prestigious award.”
Scott Duxbury, Chairman & CEO of Watford FC, said;
“It’s great to see the tireless work of the Show Racism The Red Card campaign being recognised in such a significant manner. The beauty of their campaign is in its simplicity of message; something that resonates just as clearly today as in its formative years.
“I wish the organisation every future success with its campaigning and awareness work.”
Adam Warriner, Head of Inclusion at Bolton Wanderers Community Trust, said;
“Bolton Wanderers Community Trust have been working with Show Racism the Red Card for around 10 years and during this time have offered workshops that have had a life-changing impact on young people as well as working towards a deeper understanding on some very challenging and current topics. We have held 10 annual stadium-based workshops as well as a number of sessions held directly in schools to target issues around protected characteristics such as racism, homophobia and transgender / LGBTQ issues.
“The way in which the SRtRC team deliver their work is engaging, memorable and most importantly, appropriate for the audience. The topics they discuss are often difficult to speak about and SRtRC deliver this effortlessly without prejudice. As an organisation, SRtRC are professional and reliable and have gone the extra mile time and time again. A special thanks to Gav who we have worked with directly for many of the years and who has made our partnership effortless.”
Gary Robinson, CEO of Blackburn Rovers Community Trust, said;
“Blackburn Rovers Community Trust are delighted to work hand-in-hand with Show Racism the Red Card and are fully supportive of the vital role that they play in aiming to create a fairer society. We are based in a town that has been stigmatised by government reports as statistically being the most racially segregated in the country, so the workshops and awareness that we’re able to host in partnership with Show Racism the Red Card are particularly vital to our cause, and last year’s multi-school event was so good that it even attracted the Sky Sports News cameras.
“The foundations that the charity lays for us help to form a vital component of our citizenship programme in local schools as we seek to create more harmonious communities. We hope that these efforts to help organisations like ourselves the length and breadth of the country can be recognised on an international level thanks to this prestigious award and we are proud to call ourselves partners with Show Racism the Red Card.”
Lord Bourne of Aberystwyth, Minister of Faith, said;
“I am delighted to see Show Racism the Red Card in the list of finalists for FIFA’s Diversity Awards, alongside the Horn Of Africa Development Initiative and John Moriarty Football. It is an excellent project that does vital work challenging racism and other forms of persecution and discrimination, and breaking down barriers between young people through football. I wish them every success and am proud that our Government continues to support such a vital initiative.”