The UEFA Foundation for Children and FedEx Express – a subsidiary of FedEx Corporation and the world’s largest express transportation company – are offering local children a dream opportunity at the UEFA Europa League final in Lyon on 16 May 2018.
Children chosen by Sport dans la Ville, a local non-profit organisation, will lead the two teams – Olympique de Marseille and Club Atlético de Madrid – out onto the pitch at the Stade de Lyon, where, for a brief moment, they themselves will be the stars of the UEFA Europa League final. FedEx Express’s UEFA Europa League ambassador, Ruud Gullit, delivered the exciting news to those 22 children during a recent behind-the-scenes tour of the stadium.
As the main sponsor of the UEFA Europa League, FedEx Express works closely with the UEFA Foundation for Children on initiatives that use football as a platform to connect people to new possibilities. This will be the third time that a charity based in the city hosting the UEFA Europa League final has been asked to nominate children to be player escorts at this prestigious match. This initiative complements the FedEx Cares programme, which embodies the company’s broader commitment to investing in communities where its team members live and work around the world.
“Many children in the care of charities face very challenging life circumstances. For them, to step out onto the field at the UEFA Europa League final is an once-in-a-lifetime experience, and you can see the joy on their faces,” said Jérôme Ovion, vice-president operations, hubs and transport at FedEx Express in France.
“The news that the children would be escorting their footballing heroes out onto the pitch at the UEFA Europa League final was completely unexpected – something that many will not even have dreamt of,” said Hélène Blondel-Ehni, director of partnerships at Sport dans la Ville.
“For the third year in a row, FedEx Express and the UEFA Foundation for Children are giving children in the city hosting the UEFA Europa League final an opportunity to shine,” said Pascal Torres, secretary general of the UEFA Foundation for Children.
In addition to this player escort initiative, the UEFA Foundation for Children is also giving away 100 match tickets to other partner organisations, allowing even more children to attend the final and enjoy the experience of a lifetime.