Once again Gazprom International Children’s Social Programme Football for Friendship launches its ecological initiative. Within its framework, 32 International Teams of Friendship are named after rare and endangered species of animals from the Red List of Threatened Species.

Traditionally, the International Teams of Friendship will be formed according to the Football for Friendship principle: Young Players of different nationalities, gender, and physical abilities play in the same team. This year, Football for Friendship World Championship will take place in Madrid on May 31 and June 1. The following International Teams are to take part in the Championship: Asian Elephant, California Condor, Tasmanian Devil, Oriental Stork, Fossa, Philippine Crocodile, Snow Leopard, Amsterdam Albatross, Chinchilla, Red Panda, Sunda Pangolin, Tatu-canastra, and other. The full list of the International Teams’ names is available on

The ecological initiative of the programme is aimed at promoting environmental awareness. For the first time, the International Teams of Friendship were named after the endangered species in 2018. That year, during the final events in Moscow (within the framework of 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia), eco-friendly buses on natural gas fuel were used to transport Young Participants. National parks and nature reserves all around the world, including Russia, the USA, Nepal, the UK, has joined the F4F eco-initiative. In 2019, representatives of various international environmental organizations will conduct eco-lessons for the Young Participants as part of the International Friendship Camp and the Nine Values School. The events will take place in Madrid from May 28 to June 1 and are timed to coincide with the UEFA Champions League Final.

“Last year, we were very glad to accept the invitation from the F4F Organizing Committee to conduct a lesson for the children from 211 countries and regions. It is extremely important to talk to children about protecting natural resources, uniting the Young Participants from different countries with the same values. We hope that the programme, as well as its eco-initiative, will become larger, and the number of its participants will increase”, says Sergey Aramilev, Director General of the Amur Tiger Center.

The International Children’s Social Programme Football for Friendship is implemented by Gazprom PJSC since 2013. The key values of the programme are friendship, equality, fairness, health, peace, devotion, victory, traditions, and honour. The F4F programme is supported by FIFA, UEFA, International Olympic and Paralympic Committees, football federations, international children’s foundations, famous athletes, and the world’s leading football clubs. Over the past six seasons, the F4F events have brought together more than 5.5 thousand participants and acquired over 4.5 million followers from different parts of the world, including athletes, artists, and politicians.



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