Colourful Football tournament with Vålerenga Fotball Samfunn
For the 23rd year in a row, the Vålerenga Football Society and Vålerenga Fotball Samfunn organised the Colourful Football tournament against racism in Oslo last Tuesday.
There were a total of 75 class teams and over 1,500 children from the 5th to the 7th grade at various schools in Oslo at this year’s tournament organised by Vålerenga Fotball’s foundation ‘Vålerenga Fotball Samfunn’. Across 20 football pitches at the Vallefeltet, the participants enjoyed activities such as soccer darts, speedometer and a shooting wall as well as music concerts on stage. Prizes were also awarded for fair-play, the best team names and the best kits.
‘It’s an incredible event! An event which fosters cohesion and gathers the community regardless of background. Sending a clear anti-racist message is what Vålerenga has been so good at for many, many years. You have also spread this message across the country, and you must be proud of it, at least I am very proud of it !’ said a bubbly Mayor of Oslo, Marianne Borgen, who enjoyed her day at Vallefeltet.
To open the tournament, first-team captain Adam Larsen Kwarasey and the Mayor of Oslo, Marianne Borgen shared some words with the children with the Mayor telling everyone:
‘Girls, boys, wherever you come from and whatever background you have. That’s what is so nice about football, it gathers us all’
Larsen Kwarasey added that football is for everyone no matter how you look or if you have some kind of handicap. Furthermore, he told the kids about the importance of fair play in football.
The tournament ended with the ‘Dream Match’, which is new this year, where children had the opportunity to play a game against Vålerenga’s men’s and women’s first teams.
Colourful Football was founded by ‘Vålerenga mot rasisme’ (‘Vålerenga against racism’) in 1996, and has been arranged every year since. Vålerenga against racism was established in 1996 by the club’s junior department and supporters. The fans of Vålerenga at that time had a bad reputation because of internal groups who wanted to spread violence and racism. The club and supporters came to an agreement to try and tackle the problem and a clear stance against violence and racism through Colorful Football. This year the tournament was held for the 23rd year in a row, and represents a proud tradition in the club’s work for an inclusive and diverse Oslo. The tournament focuses on fair-play, friendship and good attitudes, and the teachers received the fair-play material ahead of the tournament.
‘I am very happy that the Mayor promotes the achievements of our social projects in the club, and the kids love when the Mayor visits to cheer them all on.’ said Lars Eirik Eggen, General Manager of Stiftelsen Vålerenga Fotball Samfunn. ‘We have more than 77 classes from more than 20 schools playing football. This tournament focuses on values such as fair-play, anti-racism and all kinds of discrimination, and it’s fantastic to promote diversity on the field. Colourful Football is taking a clear stand against racism which, unfortunately, is still a problem in football and in sports.’
See the pictures from the day below.