Presenting the nominees: From school to the stadium

Presenting the nominees: From school to the stadium

Category: For the contribution to educating football

Tell us more about the program, what is your goal?
The no-profit association “From the School to the Stadium” was born out of an idea of four 20-year-old University students from Rome who love sport, with the intention of collaborating with the School so to take children and teenagers closer to world of football and learn more about the sport rules and values.

The Project ains to give the children of elementary and middle schools, accompanied by teachers and class representatives, the possibility to see during the year a match of their city team directly at the Stadium, relying on the complete organization of the visit by the Association and in maximum security.

In fact “From the School to the Stadium” not only allows you to watch the game at the Stadium but guarantees the complete organization of the whole day, including transportation, lunch, insurance and gadgets.

The Children take to the stadium their drawings and posters expressing themes and messages concerning football and sport values: this allows all spectators present to be educated and learn from the young the rules of respect and civil coexistence. We give the possibility to all children with disabilities and economically disadvantaged to participate free of charge for the whole day: in fact we want to strongly break down the barriers and obstacles to everyone ‘s participation and thus promote integration among all children.

In the first year of the project the teams that joined were SS Lazio, Sampdoria and Torino FC.
A total of 1300 children and accompanying people and a total of 22 schools participated in our 8 events, i.e. matches.
In each event the Association provides all children with a brochure explaining the game, curiosities about the teams, their history and their players.
This brochure covers an educational theme in one of its pages, different for each event, such as Fair Play, non-discrimination based on skin color and respect for the referee and opponents.

The objectives are mainly:

  • to bring schools closer to the world of football, in a context of union, fun and educating children about how to behave at the stadium and make them know the values of sport.
  • to stop people think that the stadium is a dangerous place and not suitable for children and families.
  • to educate the children at the stadium through children, who see children and young people display educational posters and feel so empowered and influenced by their presence at the stadium

 

Where did the idea of creating such a project come from?
The idea comes from Mattia, who one day went to the stadium to watch a match in Lazio, seeing the stadium almost always empty, he asks:
“Why are there no children and families at the stadium? Why are the schools so far away from the football world? Why do the schools go to museums, theaters and in many places and never to the stadiums?

He began to do researches, he saw that such a project did not exist, he began to believe in the potential of a project that could bring the schools to the stadium in complete organization.
He decided to share the idea with three close friends and started giving life to the project “From School to the Stadium”.
A year of intense and hard work of getting in touch, talking with sports clubs, supply companies (catering for lunch, coach transport, gadgets, insurance, etc.) and obtaining lots of permits and sponsorships.
The months to follow were spent in contacting the first schools to make the initiative known. We faced many refusals at the beginning many refusals, after all we were four young boys without experience.

Only after a year and a half from the day the idea was born the first event in Genoa finally took place in the Sampdoria – Cagliari match. It was a real success with more than 200 children present at the Stadium.

He began to do researches, he saw that such a project did not exist, he began to believe in the potential of a project that could bring the schools to the stadium in complete organization.
He decided to share the idea with three close friends and started giving life to the project “From School to the Stadium”.
A year of intense and hard work of getting in touch, talking with sports clubs, supply companies (catering for lunch, coach transport, gadgets, insurance, etc.) and obtaining lots of permits and sponsorships.
The months to follow were spent in contacting the first schools to make the initiative known. We faced many refusals at the beginning many refusals, after all we were four young boys without experience.

Only after a year and a half from the day the idea was born the first event in Genoa finally took place in the Sampdoria – Cagliari match. It was a real success with more than 200 children present at the Stadium.

Talking about last year, can you give us a couple of examples of the best cases that make you most proud?
After each event we received many compliments from families and schools for the perfect organization.
Many parents who saw us at the events as staff did not believe that we ourselves gave birth to the initiative because they thought there was some institution or company made up of great people.
Many children at the end of the game asked us if they could return to the next game.

The greatest joy was surely that of having made a free participation in a Genoa School that had recently undergone a storm that had hit the entire area and had created economic damage to all families.
For most children it was the first time at the stadium: it is something you never forget: knowing then that it was done with us makes us very happy.
The dream was to see many children, happy, together all close together in the same sector to see a match in the right and sporting way … we succeeded and we are proud.

You can see the happiness in the children’s faces in the photos. This is our victory, our greatest success.