This year, the #WhiteCard campaign was launched during the Friendly Football Day that gathered Turkish Cypriot and Greek Cypriot communities, in the bi-communal village of Pyla, Cyprus. Each year, to celebrate the International Day of Sport for Development and Peace, Peace and Sport invites the entire world to show support to the peace-through-sport movement through the white card symbol.
More than 1000 children, spectators and athletes came together to show their commitment to the event. Mr. Joël Bouzou, President and Founder of Peace and Sport and his Vice-President Didier Drogba, Sir Stelios Haji-Ioannou, Founder of the Stelios Philanthropic Foundation, Mr. Nicos Anastasiades, leader of the Greek Cypriot community and Mrs. Elizabeth Spehar, Special Representative and Head of the United Nations Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus, gathered for the launching of this 2019 edition. Together, they all held up a #WhiteCard which – contrary to the red card – symbolizes inclusion, equality and peace.
Joël Bouzou, President and Founder of Peace and Sport declared :
“Launching this new edition of the #WhiteCard campaign from the village of Pyla, in Cyprus with children, two football clubs and leaders from the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot communities, is highly symbolical. Raising a #WhiteCard is more than a gesture it is a commitment to respect and dialogue. ”
Every year, the #WhiteCard campaign reaches millions of people across social media, especially on the International Day of Sport for Development and Peace, celebrated on April6. Many celebrities from the world of sport such as Yohan Blake, as well as Champions for Peace like Yelena Isinbaeva and Blaise Matuidi have already raised their #WhiteCard. Last year, the digital campaign reached 90 million people worldwide.
Didier Drogba, football star and Vice-President of Peace and Sport, said:
“Today, on the occasion of the Friendly Football Day, we celebrate the uniting power of sport. It is the perfect opportunity to launch the 2019 #WhiteCard campaign. The #WhiteCard is a worldwide campaign created by Peace and Sport that promotes the positive and constructive values of sport.”