More than Football Award powered by Musco Lighting

More than Football Award powered by Musco Lighting

The Club Brugge Foundation won the More than Football Award 2020 powered by Musco Lighting for ‘The Bear and his Scarf’. Club Brugge becomes the second European football club to win the award, after the Shakhtar Donetsk Social Foundation won the first at the 13th EFDN Conference in Barcelona in November 2019 for their “Come On, Let’s Play” project.

EFDN members chose the winner during the 14th EFDN ‘#Morethanfootball’ Conference, the largest gathering of CSR-experts in European football. Louis Saha, former professional footballer who played for clubs like Fulham, Manchester United, and the French National Team announced the winner. The goal of the More than Football Award is to honour the best social initiatives in Europe delivered by a European Club, League or FA.

‘The Bear and his Scarf’ is a children’s bedtime story produced by Club Brugge. It is a story about respect, values and principles targeted at both children and parents. This book features daddy Bear and baby Bear, Club Brugge’s mascots, who go to a football game together for the very first time and meet a lot of mascots from other Belgian first division football teams. All the mascots wear a scarf in the colours of their team. All animals think these colours are what distinguishes them from each other. But the more the animals talk to each other, the more it becomes apparent that they actually have so much more in common than initially thought.

By publishing and disseminating this book, Club Brugge aims at promoting respect for all supporters, players, referees and any other parties involved, no matter what colours these people prefer. The club makes a clear and powerful stand against hooliganism, racism, abuse discrimination and disrespect. 5,000 physical copies have been printed and given away. More than 55,000 people have read the bedtime story online. The entire campaign reached more than 4,800,000 people through social media.

Visit this link to see how the European football community reacted to the announcement of Club Brugge Foundation’s victory.

Shortlisted Projects

Four other projects had been shortlisted for the Award before the EFDN Conference began. Along with Club Brugge, Legia Warsaw, Borussia Dortmund, Pro League and Malmö FF were selected for the shortlist of the More than Football Award 2020. Normally just four projects get on the shortlist but this year, five projects earned the same number of points from the members of the jury. 

The applicants selected for the shortlist were invited to make a 15-minute presentation of their project at the 14th EFDN “#Morethanfootball” Conference from 9th – 11th November.

Legia Warsaw – #GotowiDoPomocy (Ready to Help)

Legia Warsaw has launched a comprehensive aid programme in Warsaw, providing much-needed support to seniors during the coronavirus pandemic. The club invited companies, institutions, charity organisations, as well as citizens to participate in this crucial programme. Legia stadium was transformed into the central base for this social campaign. Legia Warsaw has become the biggest charity organisation in Warsaw during the pandemic. Due to the hard work of the volunteers and corporate partners, the club has been able to provide meals, medications and daily-assistance to beneficiaries. During a period of social isolation and loneliness, Legia was able to provide seniors with an opportunity for human interaction.

The support scheme reached 2,415 beneficiaries in over 1,000 locations across the city. In total, 32,000 meals were delivered. The record number of meals delivered over one day was 1,530. Over 400 volunteers from various backgrounds joined the project.

Borussia Dortmund – United by Borussia

Borussia Dortmund supporters not only associate the club with sporting success but also local roots, coexistence and personal enthusiasm. Borussia Dortmund uses this access to its fans to proactively stand up for human rights, democracy and anti-discrimination and to strengthen these values in the club and its environment. In the past there have been many attempts by right-wing extremists to use Borussia’s fan culture, especially on the imposing Yellow Wall, to recruit and spread their message of hate. Some of the organized BVB fans maintain regular contact with right-wing extremists. Borussia Dortmund is aware of this and has taken steps to tackle the particular issue and discrimination in general. The club has developed and successfully implemented a large number of measures under the umbrella of ‘United by Borussia’.

During the #Morethanfootball Action Weeks, the German club also announced to adopt the international working definition of antisemitism of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance and announced a project to put BVB fans, employees, partners and sponsors in conversation about antisemitism and hate.

Pro League – Younited Belgium

Pro League and Younited Belgium believe in the power of football and the power of people. Younited Belgium is a social organisation that uses football for the reintegration of adults struggling with issues such as housing, mental health, wellbeing, poverty or addiction. Each Younited team is set up through the collaboration between a football club and a social organisation such as street workers, day centres, neighbourhood sports centres and homeless hostels. Almost all professional football clubs in Belgium have a Younited team.

It is a national partnership that covers the entire Belgian territory. During the ongoing season, the logo of Younited Belgium will be printed on all match tickets and appear on the backdrop for all national TV-interviews. The name of the Jupiler Pro League (the first division competition) will be changed again to the Younited Pro League for an entire matchday during the Christmas period. The shirts of professional Pro League players will be auctioned and all proceeds donated to Younited Belgium.

Malmö FF – Grundskolefotboll mot rasism (School Football Against Racism)

What started as a branch of Malmö FF’s tournament “Football against racism” has grown into a large meeting place for Malmö’s schools. The activities begin in the classrooms and end with a large manifestation against racism at Eleda Stadium. This year, the club celebrates the 10th anniversary. 10,000 individuals have participated in the concept since the start 10 years ago. The initiative is a collaboration between Malmö FF and the municipality as well as “Tillsammans I förening”, and has its origin in the convention on the rights of the child, especially in the four basic principles of the Convention.

By using the UNESCO democratic education perspective (Learn about, Learn through and Learn for), the programme benefits from students’ experiences and perspectives. Between October 2020 and June 2021, over 1600 children from 30 schools in Malmö will participate in the programme. This year, the club collaborates with the famous Swedish artist Jason Diakité who is the author of a book about children’s rights.

The shortlisted projects had the opportunity to present at the 14th EFDN Virtual Conference on the 9th of November 2020. Read more about the conference here.

Criteria for the More than Football Award:

  • The project needs to be promoted by the club, league or FA during the More than Football Action Weeks.
  • The project needs to be delivered by the club, league or FA and cannot be an external initiative that is supported by the club, league or FA.
  • The project must have a proven positive impact in the community.
  • The project can be replicated by different sized clubs, leagues and FAs in Europe.