CAF and 23 Safeguarding officers from a number of African Member Associations attended the successful first edition of the FIFA Safeguarding Summit held at the FIFA Headquarters in Zurich, Switzerland where Africa.
The two-day summit took place between 25 – 26 October and also coincided with a graduation ceremony which saw all 23 of CAF’s Member Associations’ Safeguarding Officers graduating from the FIFA Safeguarding Sport Diploma – a 24-month programme designed to equip participants with the necessary skills and knowledge of safeguarding in football.
Since 2020, CAF has been on an extensive drive across the continent, conducting workshops with its 54 Member Associations to adequately capacitate its members in implementing CAF’s Safeguarding principles. This includes the appointment of CAF Safeguarding Officers in each of its Member Associations, coupled with regular engagement and workshops in ensuring that effective safeguarding measures are put in place.
The 23 nations that were present at the ceremony include Benin, Burundi, Botswana, Cameroon, Comoros, Djibouti, Egypt, Gabon, Gambia, Guinee, Eswatini, Kenya, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, Uganda, Rwanda, Seychelles, Somalia, Tunisia, Zambia.
Congratulating the 23 African representatives who completed the course, CAF Director of Member Associations, Sarah Mukuna said this was an important step in the right direction of safeguarding football development and Africa was not being left behind.
“The significant rise of African football must be supported by such programmes, where we as the governing body of African football ensure that football is played, developed and enjoyed in a safe and secure environment. We look forward to seeing the continuous rollout of CAF’s Safeguarding measures and to ensure that players develop and enjoy playing football in a safe and secure environment” concluded Mukuna.
CAF’s Safeguarding Division’s primary mission is to champion the well-being of all individuals within the game including children, youth, women, and vulnerable adults by creating a safe environment that is free from harm, abuse, and exploitation, and constantly treated with respect and dignity.
Over the next few months, CAF will be working closely with the 23 graduates as well as other safeguarding officers in the Zonal Unions and Member Associations in ensuring that:
- CAF Safeguarding measures are effectively put in place at local, zonal and continental levels.
- Develop CAF Safeguarding policies and a toolkit to guide Member Associations in establishing their own safeguarding protocols.
- Create reporting mechanisms for addressing safeguarding concerns.
- Integrate safeguarding principles into coaching education programs across all coaching licenses (D, C, B, A, and PRO).
- Establishing partnerships and collaborative initiatives with sponsors and international organizations, utilizing training programs and social media platforms to raise awareness and address a wide range of relevant topics.
- Collaborate with football legends to inspire and mentor younger generations.