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Posted On: 1 December 2022 02:21 pm
Updated On: 1 December 2022 02:32 pm

Generation Amazing Youth Festival 2022 a resounding success

Fareeha Imtiaz
Fareeha Imtiaz
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Youth festival 2022

The Generation Amazing Foundation, a FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ social and human legacy initiative, has successfully concluded its fourth annual youth festival and the second phase of its Goal 22 international school-exchange programme.

The Generation Amazing Youth Festival 2022 served as the in-person phase of the year-long Goal 22 project and brought together more than 300 international students in Doha to teach them football for development practices that emphasise and advance the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals through workshops and activities, exploring topics such as sports diplomacy, sustainability, diversity and inclusion, leadership, mental health and more.

Goal 22 began in October with virtual sessions and will continue in 2023. The youth involved represented each of the 32 competing nations at Qatar 2022 and will be tasked with sharing the knowledge gained in their schools and communities.

The festival kicked off on 17 November with a celebration of Generation Amazing positively impacting 1 million people across the globe and becoming a foundation.

Special remarks were made to more than 600 guests by H.E. Hassan Al Thawadi, Secretary General, Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy, and Chairman, Generation Amazing Foundation; Gianni Infantino, FIFA President; Nasser Al Khori, Executive Director, Generation Amazing; David Beckham, Generation Amazing Ambassador; and Ryan Reynolds, Hollywood actor and co-owner of Wrexham FC.

The keynote was given by Syrian-American composer, Malek Jandali, founder of ‘Pianos for Peace’. It featured the premiere of sports docuseries ‘Chasing Dreams’ – which was supported by Generation Amazing – and a surprise performance from The Triplets Ghetto Kids.

“Our aim is to help people develop crucial global citizenship skills while supporting capacity building through the power of football,” said Al Khori. “We want to offer much more than technical support to bring about social change to disadvantaged and marginalised communities.”
“The Generation Amazing Youth Festival, in particular, provides an opportunity for many young adults, and even their educators and our invited delivery facilitators, to be introduced to innovative sport for development frameworks, gain insight into their opportunities and challenges, and learn about new perspectives and cultures while expanding their own potential."

Since 2019, Generation Amazing has hosted its youth festival on the sidelines of major sporting events, such as the FIFA Club World Cup™ and FIFA Arab Cup™. This year’s festival included workshops and panels that were organised and facilitated by more than 30 partner organisations. These included discussions on women in sport, creating positive impact through sport, sustainability, climate change and inclusive leadership through sport, among others.

As part of the festival programme, youth participated in an inclusive football activation called the ‘All-In Tournament’ – a mini World Cup – and had the opportunity to celebrate cross-cultural interaction and diversity at the closing cultural ceremony. In addition to local and international musical acts and performances, students performed their own pieces to showcase their cultures and traditions. The ceremony included remarks from Salah Khaled, Director of the UNESCO Office for the Arab States of the Gulf and Yemen, a strategic partner of the festival.

During the tournament, participants had the opportunity to engage in dialogue with Beckham and various FIFA World Cup Ambassadors and stars, including Younis Mahmoud, Nadia Nadim, Honey Thaljieh, Ali Al Habsi, Javier Mascherano, Yaya Toure and Mohammed Saadon Al Kuwari. Guests were also treated to Qatar 2022 match tickets, facilitated by the Generation Amazing Foundation.

On the last day of the festival, officials and delegates from Qatar, Canada, Mexico and the US attended to observe and participate in an inclusive football activation aimed to recognise the success of the festival and share knowledge about key learnings with the next hosts of the FIFA World Cup™.

Source & cover image credit: Press Release