PIONEER: Keith Alexander
THE FARE network, European football’s anti- discrimination and inclusion body, and the Saint Lucia-based charity Sacred Sports Foundation Incorporated have signed a partnership agreement that will see the pair work together on anti-discrimination and sport issues.
The new three year partnership agreement, which will see Sacred Sports Foundation act as FARE’s Caribbean regional partner, comes on the eve of the second anniversary of the passing of Keith Alexander. Alexander, an instrumental force behind the creation of Sacred Sports Foundation, was the first black professional football manager in the UK, a former Saint Lucia national team player and a leading proponent in the fight against discrimination. He died unexpectedly at the age of 53 on March 3, 2010, when more than 2,000 people turned out at Lincoln Cathedral to remember his life.
“We are pleased to partner with the Sacred Sports Foundation as we remember the passing of Keith Alexander,” said Piara Powar, the Executive Director of FARE. “We are keen to expand the scope of our work with global partners in each continent and this is an important step to developing a series of partnerships with exemplars in the area of sport and social inclusion.”
FARE is a not for profit registered in the United Kingdom as a network of NGO’s, players unions, grassroots and community organisations working at national, community and governmental levels on issues related to anti- discrimination in sport, social inclusion and sport for development issues.
The network has active partners in more than 40 countries and is working across the game with fans, players, migrant and ethnic minority organisations, and governing bodies, including UEFA and FIFA. It also includes members from within football such as professional clubs and players unions. By supporting and nurturing grassroots groups and combining the voices of ordinary fans of the game, FARE acts as an umbrella organisation for those challenging racism and discrimination.
The partnership comes amid challenging times for the world game as a series of unseemly incidents internationally have again raised the spectre of racism in football.
“We have been working with FARE for some time now and are delighted to bring our relationship to a more formal agreement,” said Delroy Alexander, chairman of Sacred Sports Foundation. “This partnership is a perfect reminder of many of the principles our brother stood for and we are delighted to have been chosen as a vehicle to help spread FARE’s global message.”