Health and well-being at the heart of the World Cup in Qatar

18 oct. 2021

  • FIFA, WHO and Qatar signed trilateral agreement

  • Didier Drogba takes part in the new WHO campaign as an ambassador for health and sport

  • FIFA President hails shared drive to promote health during 2022 FIFA World Cup ™

FIFA, the World Health Organization (WHO) and the State of Qatar have launched a new long-term collaboration to link the 2022 FIFA World Cup ™ to the promotion of physical and mental health . Representatives of these three organizations see the emergence of a new model, which could serve as an example for other major international competitions in the future.

Unveiled at WHO headquarters in Geneva, the “Healthy FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 ™ – Creating Legacy for Sport and Health” campaign health “) revolves around a series of joint activities around the promotion of a healthy lifestyle, health security and mental well-being, on the sidelines of Qatar 2022.

FIFA President Gianni Infantino expressed his gratitude to the WHO and the State of Qatar for their involvement in this agreement, which aims to make the 2022 edition of the major world event the FIFA World Cup ™ safest ever.

“Our flagship competition, the World Cup, will take place in a little over a year in Qatar. But to fully enjoy this great football feast, you have to be in good health.”

“This tripartite agreement represents a very important step for FIFA, the World Health Organization and the State of Qatar, which thus demonstrate their desire to make this event the most beautiful, but also the most safe at all times. With guidance from WHO, we will launch new initiatives and invent new ways to allow everyone to enjoy every moment of this magnificent competition, integrating health, safety and well-being. be in the tournament environment. “

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“On behalf of FIFA, I am delighted to renew our support for the common goals we have set. I look forward to reaping the fruits of this alliance.”

WHO Director-General Dr Adhanom Ghebreyesus also expressed his satisfaction: “I thank Gianni Infantino and our friends at FIFA. Together we will lead a series of initiatives to encourage physical activity and mental health . We will also advocate certain public health measures and equitable access to health care and other tools to fight the Covid-19 pandemic. We are happy to deepen this relationship through this declaration of intent shared by Qatar, FIFA and WHO “.

“We all want to be able to deliver a safe and healthy World Cup next year in Qatar. But we also want to leave a legacy that will make it clear that major sporting events can help promote health and goodness. -to be.”

In addition, Didier Drogba has been officially appointed WHO Ambassador for Health and Sport. Former ambassador of the United Nations development program, the Ivorian has focused for nearly 15 years on the situation in Africa. The former Marseille and Chelsea striker said he was “delighted to be back with the UN family”.

“All my life, I have put my career at the service of communities in difficulty”, explains Drogba, veteran of three World Cups. “This is the reason why I created the Didier Drogba Foundation. Thanks to it, I was able to find funding and equipment for the health and education of the most vulnerable populations in Africa.”

“But that is not enough, in my eyes. Many people still do not have access to health. Heart disease, stroke, diabetes and cancer are on the rise all over the world.”

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“As a WHO ambassador for health and sport, I am determined to join forces with WHO, FIFA, civil society, the private sector and all the actors concerned to help me. address to as many people as possible. “

H.E. Hassan Al Thawadi, Secretary General for the Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy

One of the axes of the project is to encourage people to adopt a healthy lifestyle: regular physical activity, a balanced diet or even the fight against smoking. Health security, and in particular the control of large gatherings, is also on the program. Finally, more generally, the ambition of the instigators is to put health at the forefront of concerns.

Hassan Al Thawadi, secretary general of the Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy, wants to leave a concrete legacy. “Since we were entrusted with the organization of the 2022 World Cup, we have paid particular attention to the social heritage of the event. Our goal is to improve the daily life of individuals, in Qatar, in the region. and around the world. The pandemic has made us aware of the importance of using this platform to educate citizens on public health issues. “

“This partnership with WHO will enhance and improve the measures already taken. The first World Cup organized in the Middle East will thus be able to fully exploit its potential in the social field and become a benchmark in this area.”

Her Excellency Dr Hanan Mohamed Al Kuwari

Qatari Minister of Health, Dr Al Kuwari, also spoke on the subject: “The State of Qatar is proud to be the first country in the Middle East to host the World Cup. not just want to have a great competition, we also want to have the healthiest tournament possible. “

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“This is why we have partnered with WHO. We look forward to working with WHO, FIFA and the other partners involved in this project. Together we will achieve an unforgettable and healthy World Cup. This edition will be a landmark, because it will establish itself as the model to follow in the health sector for the organization of major international sporting events. “

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