FC Barcelona’s Lionel Messi has teamed up with tennis star Serena Williams in a new campaign to help vulnerable children around the world reach their potential through sport and education.
With the objective to raise awareness and funds for educational programs around the World, the “1 in 11” campaign, so called because it represents the number of children worldwide who are unable to attend school, is the result of a collaboration between UNICEF, the FC Barcelona Foundation, and Reach Out To Asia.
Messi, who is both a representative of Barcelona’s charitable arm and a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador said: “I’m supporting the 1 in 11 campaign because I believe every child has the right to fulfill their potential and pursue their dreams. Education is fundamental to this, but millions of children across the world are out of school and not getting the start in life they are entitled to.”
“I believe that through sport we can teach values of respect, teamwork and effort, and ultimately inspire children to attend and stay on in school, so they will receive the quality education which will equip them with the skills they need for life”, Messi added.
World tennis No 1 Serena Williams, who is also a UNICEF ambassador, said: “In many countries we take it for granted that every child has the right to receive a quality education, but “1 in 11” children around the world do not enjoy that right – and without it, may never reach their full potential. We need to kick start global progress and get that number down to zero, so every child has the chance to learn.”
1 in 11’s campaign also includes a charitable auction, organized by Sotheby’s in London, that will see some unique works created for the occasion and be sold at Sotheby’s on 12 February.