FIFA and WHO Extend Collaboration to Promote Healthy Lifestyles Worldwide
FIFA and WHO have extended their collaboration and commitment to promoting healthy lifestyles and equal access to health services globally through the power of football.
The signing of a four-year extension to the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) took place during the Seventy-sixth World Health Assembly in Geneva, Switzerland, between WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus and FIFA President Gianni Infantino.
“Health and football are perfect teammates. Promoting healthy lifestyles, safe stadiums and the physical and mental benefits of physical activity are among the many health goals WHO is proud to keep scoring with FIFA for the next four years,” said Dr Tedros.
“WHO’s partnership with FIFA has already succeeded to share evidence-based messages to help people of all ages lead healthier and safer lives through the power of football and sport. WHO looks forward to continuing this journey.”
Gianni Infantino expressed his pride in renewing the MoU with WHO, stating, “We are proud to continue our relationship to pass important physical and mental health messages through our global football audience.”
The Football Unites the World campaign was launched during the FIFA World Cup in Qatar in 2022 by FIFA and WHO. The campaign was supported by renowned footballers such as Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, Hassan Al-Haydos, and Karim Benzema, to name a few, as well as two of the WHO’s Goodwill Ambassadors for Sport and Health, Alisson Becker and Didier Drogba.
Since 2020, FIFA and WHO have collaborated on various digital campaigns and initiatives addressing a range of health-related issues, including domestic violence (#SafeHome), the COVID-19 pandemic (#HumanitysHeroes), and equitable access to vaccinations and vaccines, diagnostics, oxygen, and other life-saving tools (#ACTogether).
In addition, the two organizations have been promoting the need for regular physical activity for three years through the #BeActive campaign. WHO recommends that healthy adults do a minimum of 30 minutes of physical activity per day, while children should do a minimum of 60 minutes daily. Yet, current WHO data shows that 80% of adolescents are not getting enough daily exercise.
This renewed collaboration between FIFA and WHO marks their continued commitment to improving global health and wellbeing through football and the power of sport.