In the spirit of the 2012 Olympic Games in London, top Portuguese soccer team Benfica and the UNHCR collaborated in hopes of raising funds for displaced people in Kenya and Mali. An exhibition soccer match was scheduled on July 19, 2012 to achieve this effort. The current roster of Beefica faced off against a roster of former all-stars that included Luis Figo (Portugal’s famous soccer player and 2001 Player of the Year), Rui Costa, and Brazilians Ronaldo and Roberto Carlos — just to name a few. This exhibition match, called “an act against hunger,” drew an audience of 33,000 people, with a portion of the proceeds will be used for funding UNHCR food and nutrition camps in Kenya and Mali. Luis Filipe Vieira, president of the Benfica foundation, acknowledged the importance of the UNHCR programs to help those in need.
“Benfica are a universal and humanist club of values, a club that undertake their social responsibility…The Benfica Foundation will continue developing actions to help those in need. Please join us.” -Luis Filipe Vieira
Antonio Guterres, former Prime Minister of Portugal and current High Commission for the UNHCR, was ecstatic about the enormous turnout at the exhibition match.
“It is remarkable that 33,000 people, at a [financially very difficult] time like this, have bought a ticket to come here.” -Antonio Guterres
The partnership between Benfica and the UNHCR is quite remarkable. To read the rest of the article, please visit http://www.unhcr.org/5007fea66.html.
To help the UNHCR provide shelter, nutrition and food to Mali, please make an online donation today!
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