The sixth annual footbal 'Match Against Poverty' will take place in Morocco next
month, soccer stars and United Nations Goodwill Ambassadors, Ronaldo and
Zinedine Zidane, who will captain the two teams, announced on Thursday.
The theme for this year’s match in the northern city of Fes, the first to be
played outside Europe, is the eradication of extreme poverty and hunger, the UN
Proceeds raised through the game will go to UNDP anti-poverty projects around
the world, including a national project in Morocco.
Since 2003 the UNDP Goodwill Ambassadors have captained two teams of
international soccer stars in an annual match to involve the public in fighting
poverty and to raise awareness of the UN's Millennium Development Goals.
The MDGs are an ambitious set of targets which seek to halve world poverty and
improve human welfare by 2015.
Brazialian ace Ronaldo and French footballing legend Zidane will between 2008
and 2015 play in eight matches, each promoting one of the eight MDGs.
The funds raised at each game will go to projects designed to support the MDG
that it highlights.
“We are now more than halfway towards the target date, 2015, by which the
Millennium Development Goals are to be achieved,” said UNDP Administrator Kemal
“Despite many significant achievements, we need to continue our campaign to
reach them. Initiatives like the Match Against Poverty… are an important
contribution,” Dervis added.
A total 189 UN member states and at least 23 international organisations agreed
on the MDGs in 2001. The goals include reducing extreme poverty, reducing child
mortality rates, fighting disease epidemics such as AIDS, and achieving
universal primary education.