AS Roma players will wear a special shirt during Sunday’s Serie A meeting against Sassuolo, to show support and provide assistance to the people of Afghanistan.
The game, which takes place at the Stadio Olimpico on Sunday night (kick-off: 20:45 local time), will see a special patch feature on the sleeve of the Giallorossi shirts.
The patch will feature the logo of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the UN Agency focused on the plight of refugees around the world.
The shirts worn by the players will then be auctioned off for charity, with all proceeds being donated to support UNHCR initiatives and assist the people of Afghanistan.
Roma Cares, the club’s charity arm, has chosen to embark on this initiative on the 70th anniversary of the Geneva Convention on Refugees, which enshrined the rights of displaced people in international law.
AS Roma will become the first football club to embark on a joint initiative with the UNHCR to help the people of Afghanistan: supporting children, women and men who are currently experiencing another traumatic period in the country.
Afghanistan is currently in the midst of another severe humanitarian crisis. Since the start of the year, an estimated 570,000 people have fled their homes.
In total, around 3.5 million people are currently displaced and in dire need of assistance. Of those, around 80 per cent are women and children – a proportion of the population who are paying the highest price for the ongoing emergency.
“We welcome the support that AS Roma and Roma Cares, with the assistance of our agency, want to give to the people of Afghanistan,” said Chiara Cardoletti, the UNHCR representative for Italy, the Holy See and San Marino.
“Despite the incredibly difficult circumstances, the UNHCR has chosen to stay in Afghanistan – a country where we have been working for more than 40 years – in order to provide assistance and save lives.
“This year alone we have supplied essential survival items to more than 240,000 people, but the need for such items grows hour by hour and the funds available are woefully insufficient.
“At times like this, even a small contribution can make a huge difference.”
UNHCR has created a special landing page, where Roma fans can make a donation in support of the people of Afghanistan.
“We are honoured to be able to assist the UN Agency for Refugees with an activity that supports the people of Afghanistan, who are living through a humanitarian crisis that has been noted around the world,” said Guido Fienga, AS Roma’s CEO.
“We are certain that, once again, Roma supporters will show their compassion and generosity in the face of a tragedy that is affecting men, women and children.
“Everyone at the club wants to show our support for those affected, and our players will be proud to wear the UNHCR patch on the pitch on Sunday.
“We are all also delighted to stand alongside the institution, under Director General Filippo Grandi, on the 70th anniversary of the signing of Geneva Convention on the status of refugees.”
The UNHCR, a Nobel Peace Prize-winning organisation, has consistently received assistance from the Giallorossi over the years for its many humanitarian initiatives – through donations, awareness campaigns and shows of solidarity with those forced to flee their homes due to war or persecution.
Over the upcoming weeks, the club will facilitate the distribution of sporting materials from EURO 2020, donated to Roma Cares via the UEFA Foundation, among Afghan refugees currently being housed in centres throughout Italy.