This season’s FARE Action Week against Racism and Discrimination in European will kicks off. The 11th Action Week will take place from the 14 - 26 October 2010 and will reach out to 40 European countries.

With the backing of UEFA the annual Action Week of the Football Against Racism in Europe (FARE) network has grown into Europe’s largest anti-discrimination campaign in sport. A key fixture in the European footballing calendar, the Action Week will see football clubs, NGOs, fan and youth groups, ethnic minorities and migrants, and schools participating in over 1,000 activities across the continent.

Following the ‘Call for Action’ which closed mid-September FARE received more than 200 applications for small grants from grassroots groups from all corners of Europe. FARE will provide financial support for more than 130 actions and initiatives and many more groups are receiving free campaign material including t-shirts, anti-racism captain’s armbands, stickers, flags and posters.

Challenging Homophobia

This year the official poster carries the slogan ‘Football for Equality’, which is also the title of a European Union-funded project launched by FARE partners. The aim is to highlight the need to challenge not only racism but also homophobia on all levels of football. The back of the poster features a photo report about the successful 10th FARE Action Week last season, as well as an update on FARE’s restructuring process.

To address the issue of homophobia, FARE partner European Gay and Lesbian Sports Federation (EGLSF) have produced a special poster and have administered special action grants for LBGT groups.

As part of its Unite Against Racism campaign, UEFA will use its premier club competitions, the UEFA Champions League (19 - 20 October) and the UEFA Europa League (21 October), to make its stand against racism during the FARE Action Week.

Action at EURO 2012 Qualifiers

Some national associations have dedicated the forthcoming UEFA EURO 2012 qualifier matches to the fight against intolerance. When Belgium plays Austria on Tuesday the first black player in the Belgian national team, Dimitri M’buyu, will call for the fans to give a one minute applause - for diversity and against racism. Before tonight’s match against Azerbaijan Austria’s team captain Marc Janko will send a message against xenophobia via the vidi-wall at the Vienna Ernst-Happel-stadium. During the home ties against Slovakia and Andorra the Football Federation of Armenia (FFA) will welcome ethnic minority fans and spread a powerful message for reconciliation and integration among people of different ethnic backgrounds.

Published 14/10/2010