From 17th-30th October Football Unites is joining the football community across Europe in using the 8th FARE (Football Against Racism in Europe) Action Week to make a stand against racism in the game. The Action Week also coincides with Black History Month. Football Unites is involved in several initiatives to mark both occasions:
Wednesday 24th October, 6-9pm: Celebration evening for young people involved in the making of the forthcoming DVD 'It's Your Call' which examines racism and conflict resolution. The DVD will be launched in November.
Thursday 25th October, 5-7pm: Launch of the Laurie Cunningham Project. This joint initiative between Football Unites, The Hub African-Caribbean Centre and Sheffield United aims to record the experiences of Sheffield's ethnic minorities in relation to football in the 1970s and earlier. We are tying this in with the 30th anniversary earlier this year of Laurie Cunningham's debut for England Under-21s. He became the first black player to play for England when on 27th April 1977, he scored the winning goal in a 1-0 win against Scotland under-21s. The match took place at Bramall Lane, Sheffield, and after the match, Cunningham visited the Hub youth club and chatted to young people till late. Anyone who was at the match, or at the Hub that night, is welcome to attend the launch or contribute their memories, photos etc to the project. Please contact us for an invitation. The Legends of the Lane museum at Sheffield United is also launching an exhibition about black players' contribution to Sheffield United from the 19th century onwards.
Friday 26th October, 7.30pm: Give Us a Wave! With Gary Kaye and Richie Moran at The Showroom cinema, Sheffield. A celebration of the diversity of football in words and images as part of Off the Shelf, Sheffield's festival of reading and writing. Gary Kaye won the 2005 Ilkley Literature Festival Open Mic competition and was Poet in Residence at Leeds United, performing on the pitch at Elland Road in front of 27,000 people! He recently published his first volume of poetry 'A Fan for All Seasons'. Richie Moran is a former professional footballer who quit the game because of the racism he encountered. His book 'It Really is a Small World' is about his travels in America and the Antipodes. Tickets are £6 or £5 concessions from the Showroom on 0114 2757727.
Tuesday 30th October, 12-4pm: Anti-racist and football activities with Heeley Develpment Trust at Anns Road School.
Saturday 3rd November, 3pm: Sheffield United v Burnley. United's anti-racism day has been put back to 3rd November. Football Unites will be distributing free anti-racist posters and other materials at the match, and we're hoping some of the young people who attend our coaching sessions will be able to stage an exhibition game on the pitch at half-time.
October/November - dates tbc: Football Unites coach Desbon Bushiri will travel to DR Congo to help set up the Football Between Communities (or Football Inter-Communautaire) project - see previous news item.
Contact us for more information about any of these events.
In England, around 1,000 events will be taking place. These range from local events organised by comunity groups, schools, amateur clubs and fans, to each Premiership and Football League club designating a home match in the period an anti-racism day of action. For a list of events in the UK, visit http://www.kickitout.org/index.php?id=193. To view events across Europe, click on http://farenet.org/actionweek_events.asp.