Laureus Chairman Dr Edwin Moses and FC Barcelona President Mr Sandro Rosell today opened the annual three-day Laureus Sport for Good Foundation Global Summit, which is being held at FC Barcelona’s Nou Camp stadium.
The Laureus Global Summit brings together representatives from more than 100 sports-based community projects around the world which are supported by Laureus.
In Barcelona, project leaders from 34 countries have joined members of the Laureus World Sports Academy and representatives of other sport for good organisations to share knowledge and innovation around the use of sport to improve the lives of young people.
Along with Edwin Moses, the Laureus Academy Members present include Spanish Tour de France giant Miguel Indurain, Olympic swimming legend Mark Spitz, boxing’s Marvelous Marvin Hagler, British Paralympic athlete Tanni Grey-Thompson, Olympic downhill skier Franz Klammer and rugby greats Sean Fitzpatrick, Morné du Plessis and Hugo Porta.
The Laureus Sport for Good Foundation and FC Barcelona will collaborate in the future on developing projects with the objective of improving education, health and social integration in underprivileged communities.
In Spain, Laureus already supports the Special Olympics, which uses sport to help people with intellectual disabilities, and the Fundacion Alex in Barcelona, which provides financial support for individuals, teams or groups of people who participate in sport but are in need of aid to further develop their abilities.
Now the aim of the Fundación Laureus España is to create even more projects in the future to help and support hundreds more young people in these economically difficult times in Spain.
Sandro Rosell, President of the FC Barcelona has affirmed that: ‘We are proud to place Barça at the service of those who need it the most, especially children and youth. We do this using sports, all its values and powerful forces, to unite people, as Nelson Mandela, Patron of Laureus, has always emphasised."
Edwin Moses added: “This is a unique gathering of experts on the use of sport as a tool for social change. Laureus-supported projects around the world are all pushing the barriers of what sport can achieve for young people and at Laureus we see the impact they are having year round, with young people moving out of gangs, gaining qualifications, moving into employment, and improving physical and mental health. The objective of this event is to strengthen the global network of Laureus Sport for Good projects by giving them a space where they can share ideas, knowledge and good practice with one another. Ultimately this translates into more impact for kids and communities as projects access cutting edge learning and approaches from around the world.
“Now with so many social problems all around us, I believe we should redouble our efforts to get our message over and do whatever we can to help young people. That is why I am so delighted that we are able to come to Barcelona for this important Global Summit and I would like to thank Senor Rosell and everyone at FC Barcelona for their support.”
Later in the day, the Laureus Academy Members visited the Llars Mundet site, where Special Olympics deliver their project in Barcelona, and joined the children there in sports activity.