In blind football, EVERYBODY WINS
Through their initiative “PAOK Action”, PAOK FC support the international campaign “A Ball for All” of non-governmental organization “Orama Neon Youthorama” and UEFA Foundation for Children, in order to provide as many balls for visually impaired children in schools around the world.
The manager of the campaign, Ilias Mastoras, along with Stratos Chatziapostolidis, international with the Greek national blind team since 1997, visited Toumba Stadium and had the opportunity to speak to the PAOK footballers about blind football and promote their outstanding action “A Ball for All”. Their aim is to distribute adapted balls (created by Orama Neon Youthorama) that contain bells to all blind children.
The PAOK first team players Dimitris Limnios , José Alberto Cañas , Rodrigo Rey , Alexandros Paschalakis, Dimitris Pelkas and Adelino Vieirinha were taught the rules of blind football. Afterwards, they had to put on their masks and tried to play without using their vision, but just relying on their hearing, their orientation ability and the directions of their team-mates.
Chatziapostolidis had no problem recording a hat-trick against PAOK players. The second part of the event was held from the spot. Players tried to convert penalties against a sighted goalkeeper, led by the sound of three knocks in each post and the crossbar.
Mr. Mastoras spoke to paokfc.gr and underlined the following:
Orama Neon Youthorama is based in Panorama and participates in the project Erasmus+Sport “In blind football, EVERYBODY WINS”. Our aim is to hear our ball in every school and house with visually impaired children.
Τhis innovative ball was created in Thessaloniki in 2017, within the European project Erasmus + and the international campaign “A Ball for All”. It is not for sale, it is being donated to blind children and their schools around the world. In less than a year, more than 1.000 balls have been donated for free in 30 countries in five continents. In 2018, the campaign is also sponsored by UEFA Foundation for Children. It was presented in Qatar and Xavi Hernández participated in the event.