MELBOURNE: Following similar agreements entered into in the last two years with the All India Football Federation and the J.LEAGUE, Football Federation Australia (FFA) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with its German counterpart, the Deutscher Fussball Bund (DFB).
In Sochi for the 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup clash between Australia and Germany earlier this month, FFA chairman Steven Lowy and CEO David Gallop met with their German counterparts, DFB president Reinhard Grindel and DFB general secretary Dr Friedrich Curtius ahead of the match to sign the document.
The MoU outlines a number of areas of collaboration between the national governing bodies of football in Australia and Germany, but a central component is a commitment to a jointly administered sport for development project in south-east Asia.
Both FFA and DFB have a history operating sport for development programs in different regions of the world, and this collaboration will mark the first time that the two member associations will combine together to deliver a program.
FFA, in partnership with the Oceania Football Confederation and the Australian government, has managed Just Play, a sport for development program, since 2009. The program uses football to teach children aged 6-12 about gender equality, hygiene and sanitation and the role an active lifestyle plays in avoiding non-communicable diseases like obesity.
More than 250,000 children across 11 countries in the Pacific have been involved in the program, and a pilot in India beginning in 2016 was the first time that Just Play has gone to Asia.
The DFB runs, in collaboration with a number of organisations, sport for development programs in seven different countries – Afghanistan, Brazil, Jordan, Colombia, Mozambique, Namibia and the Palestinian Territories.
Staff from the two member associations will meet in August this year for a sport for development workshop that will underpin the implementation of the project.
In addition to the joint administration of a sport for development program, there will also be expertise exchanges and information sharing on a number of areas including coaching, grassroots football, marketing and media as well as event management.