March 27: The World Health Organisation has teamed up with FIFA, the international governing body of football, to combat the coronavirus (COVID-19) by launching a new awareness campaign led by world-renowned footballers. According to the WHO, the footballers have been calling on all people around the world to follow five key steps to stop the spread of the disease.
The “Pass the message to kick out coronavirus” campaign promotes five key steps for people to follow to protect their health in line with WHO guidance, focused on hand washing, coughing etiquette, not touching your face, physical distance and staying home if feeling unwell.
“FIFA and its President Gianni Infantino have been actively involved in passing the message against this pandemic since the very beginning,” said WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus at the virtual launch of the campaign at WHO headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland.
“Be it through campaigns or funding, FIFA has stood up to the coronavirus, and I am delighted that world football is supporting WHO to kick out the coronavirus. I have no doubt with this type of support that together we will win.”
“We need teamwork to combat the coronavirus,” said FIFA President Gianni Infantino. “FIFA has teamed up with WHO because health comes first. I call upon the football community worldwide to join us in supporting this campaign to pass the message even further. Some of the greatest players to have played the beautiful game have put their names to the campaign and are united in their desire to pass the message to kick out COVID-19.”
Twenty-eight players are involved in the video campaign, which is being published in 13 languages.
“If you have a fever, cough and difficulty breathing, seek medical attention and call in advance,” WHO wrote on its website urging the people to keep the local health authorities informed about the latest situation in the locality.
“Please follow their specific instructions, and call in advance to allow them to direct you to the appropriate local health facility. This serves to protect you and to help prevent the spread of virus and other infections.”
FIFA has also pledged $10 million to support the COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund for WHO.