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Brazil embassy in Pakistan honours street football players

By Aslam Chandio, TwoCircles.net,

Islamabad: Brazil embassy in Pakistan’s capital Islamabad on Monday conducted a ceremony in honour of the Pakistan’s street children football team that secured third position in the recently held Street Child World Cup in Brazil.

The Embassy of Brazil celebrated the performance of the team. Ambassador of Brazil to Pakistan, Alfredo Leoni praised the performance of the street footballers awarded them with shields and other gifts during the ceremony.

Brazil embassy in Pakistan honours street football players

Highlighting the importance of sports activities, Leoni said that sport is a good tool for social organizations and institutions to promote education and take children out of the streets. He praised the performance of Pakistani street children football team for securing third position in the Street Child World Cup and termed it as inspiration for other children in Pakistan.

Talking about support of Pakistanis for the Brazilian football team, Leoni said, “I am thankful to people of Pakistan for supporting Brazil football team in every event. Also, I do thank Pakistanis in advance for their support in FIFA Football World Cup 2014 that is scheduled to be held from June 12 to July 13 in Brazil”.

Brazil embassy in Pakistan honours street football players

Apart from the nine-member team, children from one Rawalpindi and two Islamabad organizations; Rah-e-Amal, and Lettuce Bee Kids and Mashal Model School participated in the ceremony. Theseorganizations support the education and development of street children in the twin cities.

The Pakistan’s Street Children football team comprises Sameer Ahmed, Abdul Raziq, Aurangzeb Baba, Salman Hussain, Owais Ali, Faizan Fayyaz, Muhammad Shoaib, Mehr Ali and Rajab Ali. Faizan Fayyaz is from Quetta while the remaining eight young footballers are from Karachi.

Representatives of the three organizations that supported the street children football team, Naveed Hasan Khan (Chairman of Azad Foundation), Amjad Rasool (Director of Muslim Hands) and John Wroe (CEO of the NGO Street Child World Cup) and students of the Portuguese language course also participated in the ceremony.

Brazil embassy in Pakistan honours street football players

In the Street Child World Cup 2014, the Pakistan’s team topped its preliminary round group, won the quarter-final on penalties against Philippines but lost to Burundi in the semis. The Pakistanis then went on to beat the United States on penalties to win third place in the tournament.

Leoni thanked representatives of Azad Foundation, Muslim Hands, Mashal Model School, Luttuce Bee Kids and Rah-e-Amal for their participations in the ceremony and praised the excellent work done by their organizations in helping children in need. He then granted shields to all Pakistani street football players, their coach Abdul Rashid, the Chairman of Azad Foundation and the Director of Muslim Hands as well as prizes for the winners of the football goal competition with which the event got started.

(Aslam Chandio is an Islamabad based journalist. He tweets at @aslamchandio_ )


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