Eto’o, alongside FIFA Chief Medical Officer Prof Jiri Dvorak, will visit Sierra Leone and Ghana. Professor Dvorak will then travel onwards to Kenya, where FIFA’s 11 for Healthprogram has been running for several years.
Eto’o and Dvorak will visit communities affected by Ebola, and will evaluate the effectiveness of the emergency campaign 11 against Ebola. The 11 against Ebolacampaign was launched last year by FIFA and the World Bank. Top players such as Cristiano Ronaldo, Didier Drogba and Neymar joined forces with FIFA to highlight simple public health messages, and to help prevent the spread of the Ebola virus.
Known for his philanthropic and humanitarian work, Eto’o will use his visit in Sierra Leone to interact with children affected by the Ebola epidemic, while also using the opportunity to communicate health preservation messages in communities and schools.
“Football is the pleasure of being together and a safe way to improve health. To stay fit you have to be disciplined and discipline is a great tool to educate young people about a healthier lifestyle,” Eto’o said.
The FIFA 11 for Health campaign, which uses football to help improve children’s knowledge, attitudes and behaviour towards vital health issues, has been a significant success in many African nations since being introduced ahead of the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa.
The programme embraces the power of football and scientific research to inspire a healthier world and better health among young people, so that they can live life to the full. It provides guidance to help tackle the most frequent causes of diseases such as HIV/ AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria, diabetes and obesity.
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