NEW YORK – A few months from the most recent engagement that took Inter Campus to the glass building that is home to the UN, the Nerazzurri’s organisation was back for an important event on Crime Prevention and Sustainable Development through Sports that was organised by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC).
President of the UN General Assembly Miroslav Lajčák and the Executive Director of the UNODC Yury Fedotov started the day off and it provided a significant opportunity to discuss the themes of Agenda 2030 which aims to create sustainable development and an ever-increasing role for sport as a tool for peace and crime prevention. Former NBA basketball player Dikembe Mutombo who is now the president of a foundation in his own name was in attendance along with the UN’s Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth Jayathma Wickramanayake, Secretary General of the 2022 World Cup’s Supreme Committee for Legacy and Deliverance Hassan Al-Thawadi and Anita DeFrantz who is the first African-American woman to have worked as a member of the International Olympic Committee.
Speakers underlined the role of sport in strengthening entire communities and the most vulnerable people in society (women, young people and children). The benefits of sport for health, education and social inclusion were also discussed. Furthermore, sport is capable of helping to build self-confidence so that daily challenges can be approached while also steering at-risk young people and children away from the dangers of crime, violence and drugs.
President of the Fundación Renacimiento José Vallejo was present on behalf of Inter Campus. The foundation is a partner of Inter Campus in the Tepito area of Mexico City. It’s an area known for its high crime rate and drug use starting from a young age. “With its work in football and education, Inter Campus aims to be an important tool for the Foundation in rehabilitating these children and reintegrating them to society,” said Inter Campus Mexico’s Project Manager Christian Valerio.
It’s not just a collaboration between a NGO and a football club, but rather a real and tangible project that is integrated with the global objectives set by the UN.
Italy’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations Sebastiano Cardi spoke to bring the meeting to a close: “Community-based sports projects are an incredible tool for crime prevention. Sport is often the key ingredient that helps communities come back after periods of significant hardship.”