Soccer

Building cross-cultural understanding through sports diplomacy

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FHI 360 has been awarded a cooperative agreement by the U.S. Department of State to implement the Sports Visitor and Sports Envoy Program, which uses sports as a platform to enhance cross-cultural understanding and open new avenues of dialogue and collaboration between the United States and other countries.

The Sports Envoy program sends current or retired U.S. coaches and athletes to countries around the world to lead sports clinics, promote inclusive values and strengthen youth resiliency. The Sports Visitor program brings coaches, administrators and youth athletes from other countries to the United States to interact with American peers and to experience American society and culture through the lens of sport. Together, the Sports Visitor and Sports Envoy program highlights American expertise, leadership and lessons learned in the sporting arena, from community-based recreational youth play to the professional levels, focusing on the professional and leadership development of youth, coaches and sports administrators. The program will be administered by FHI 360, with funding from the U.S. Department of State’s Sports Diplomacy Division within the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

Sports Envoys Alex Morgan and Servando Carrasco Visit Tanzania

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Olympic Gold Medalist and FIFA Women’s World Cup champion Alex Morgan and Orlando City SC midfielder Servando Carrasco of Major League Soccer are traveling to Tanzania on December 2-9 as U.S. Department of State Sports Envoys. The Sports Envoys are helping to bolster the United States’ cultural and social ties with the youth of Tanzania, including the Maasai people living at the foothills of Mount Kilimanjaro.

Additionally, Morgan and Carrasco will hold soccer clinics and speak with students from schools in Dar es Salaam and Zanzibar. The Sports Envoys will also visit two all-girls soccer programs to highlight the importance of providing equal opportunities for all. Nike has donated soccer balls to schools and participants in support of this program.

This Sports Envoy program’s focus on girls and women in sports also builds on the “Equal Playing Field” initiative, which in June 2017 saw 30 women from six continents, including previous U.S. Sports Envoy Lori Lindsey, play the world’s highest soccer match at 18,747 feet (5,714 meters) on Mount Kilimanjaro.