20,000 Children’s smiles
On the initiative of the UEFA Foundation for Children and in close cooperation with EURO 2016 SAS and the tournament’s host cities, 20,000 Children’s Smiles is giving 20,000 youngsters aged 12 to 18 the opportunity to attend UEFA EURO 2016 matches in their local area.
The project is being rolled out throughout the group stage (not including the opening match) and the round of 16, i.e. at 43 different matches across all ten host cities, with an average of 500 tickets being made available per match.
The project would not have been possible without the support of the host cities, which identified local organisations working day in, day out with young people in difficult situations. The host cities and the UEFA Foundation for Children together have taken care of all the logistics, particularly in terms of administrative support and transport.
The local organisations selected to take part in the project include community centres, rehabilitation centres, medical centres and local football clubs. They will be the ones accompanying the youngsters to the matches. Some of the youngsters were offered this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity in exchange for some kind of community service, such as helping to clean up parts of the city. That was the case in Marseille, for example, where a clean-up operation was organised on Prado Beach.