The professional clubs held a series of workshops as part of the Child Safeguarding Program, organised by the UAE Pro League, in cooperation with the Ministry of Interior affiliated Child Protection Center.
As part of the program, the Club Licensing Department of the UAE Pro League visited a number of football academies of professional clubs at Al Ain, Al Wahda, Baniyas and Shabab Al Ahli to review the measures and procedures followed within the framework set by the Child Safeguarding Program.
At Al Wahda Academy, an awareness workshop was held, entitled Child Protection Law (Wadeema Law), while another awareness lecture was held at Baniyas academy, entitled ‘Bullying and Child Safeguarding’, which was organised in cooperation with the Juvenile Care Center at Abu Dhabi Police.
The workshops, which were attended by players of the various age groups in the Baniyas club, highlighted the importance of learning about the concept of child protection, in order to familiarise players with the causes and ways of dealing with bullying, in addition to reviewing the rights and duties of children.
At Al Ain Club, a workshop entitled ‘Child Protection’ was held and included introductory lectures on the duties and social responsibility of the child.
The workshop also included a field visit to the sports facilities and football fields in the academy.
During their visit to the Shabab Al-Ahli academy, the first Child Protection Forum, entitled ‘Child Protection Ambassadors’ was organised by the club officials, in cooperation with a number of agencies related to child protection, strategic partners of the Dubai government, and federal agencies at the state level, including the Ministry of Community Development, the Dubai Sports Council, the Emirates Foundation for School Education, the Community Development Authority in Dubai, the Safety Ambassadors of the Dubai Police, the Sharjah Model School, the Saudi German Hospital in Ajman and Taif Al Emarat Group, in addition to wide participation of clubs nationwide.
The forum included various activities, such as educational workshops and competitions on the rights of children and ways to protect them in the clubs and the community.
It also tackled the provisions and rules related to the child rights stipulated at the Child Rights Law (Wadeema), in terms of clarifying the procedures for protecting the rights of the child, the appropriate means for their implementation, as well as the responsibilities of the law enforcement bodies.
The forum also discussed ways to enhance the positive partnership among agencies working in the field of child care with regard to their responsibilities for safeguarding children and the state’s approach in facing such issues, in a way that highlights cooperation between those agencies, spreading the culture of child protection.
It also reviewed other main tasks represented in training some groups of players to be as ambassadors in their clubs for protecting children’s rights, with the aim of emphasising the societal role of sports clubs and providing a safe and attractive environment for the childrens’ community in sports clubs, which will be reflected in improving the quality of life of players and the entire sports community.