Viktor Zubkov meets with young ambassador of Football for Friendship project
Moscow. Viktor Zubkov, Chairman of the Gazprom Board of Directors, met with 12-year-old Zakhar Badyuk (Artyom, Primorye Territory), Russia’s representative in the fifth season of Gazprom’s Football for Friendship (F4F) international children's social project.
Held in the lead-up to the International Day of Football and Friendship, it was the first in a series of meetings between the young ambassador and various officials, including representatives of the Football Union of Russia and the Russian Olympic Committee, famous athletes, and renowned cultural figures.
In the course of the meeting, Viktor Zubkov emphasized the project’s importance and successes, while Zakhar Badyuk spoke about his F4F-related expectations and athletic achievements.
“The Football for Friendship project is based on the notions of honor, friendship, equality, peace, and health. These values should be taught at an early age. We see our goal as creating the conditions for that. With every year that passes, we engage more and more boys and girls in the project. This summer, 635 participants from 64 countries will gather in St. Petersburg,” said Viktor Zubkov.
“I am happy to represent Russia in the Football for Friendship project. I’d love to make friends around the world, and, of course, I hope we’ll win,” said Zakhar Badyuk.
The Football for Friendship (F4F) international children's social project has been implemented by Gazprom since 2013.
The project is aimed at developing youth football and fostering tolerance and respect toward different cultures and ethnicities among children from across the world. The key values supported and promoted by the project's participants include friendship, equality, fairness, health, peace, devotion, victory, traditions, and honor.
The annual Football for Friendship International Children's Forum is the project’s most important event, bringing together young footballers from different countries who discuss worldwide promotion of the key values with media professionals and famous football players.
The F4F project has a special prize: the Nine Values Cup is a unique trophy awarded annually to a professional football club for the implementation of social initiatives based on the project’s values. The winner is chosen by young F4F ambassadors through a vote held in all countries participating in the project.
Thousands of participants join F4F every year. Since its inception, the project's geographical scope expanded considerably from 8 countries in 2013 to 64 in 2017. Hundreds of young athletes become ambassadors for the F4F movement and its values in their respective countries. The Friendship Bracelet, the official symbol of F4F, is worn by over 400,000 people across the world, including children, adults, well-known athletes and journalists, performers, political figures, and heads of state.
In 2017, the project’s participating countries are as follows: Algeria, Argentina, Armenia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Belarus, Belgium, Bolivia, Brazil, Bulgaria, China, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Egypt, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, India, Iran, Iraq, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Libya, Lithuania, Macedonia, Mexico, Mozambique, Netherlands, Norway, Pakistan, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Switzerland, Syria, Tajikistan, Tanzania, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, Uruguay, the United Kingdom, the United States, Uzbekistan, Venezuela, and Vietnam.
The fifth season of the project is held in a new format. Instead of representing football clubs from different countries, young players are divided into eight international Friendship Teams. Eight-player teams consist of 12-year-old boys and girls, including those with disabilities. The F4F International Organizing Committee joined efforts with national football federations to select the players (one representative from each country).
Gazprom is a global energy company focused on geological exploration, production, transportation, storage, processing and sales of gas (including as NGV fuel), gas condensate and oil, as well as generation and distribution of heat and electric power. The Company operates in Russia, Africa, Middle East, Europe, and Latin America, as well as Central, South and Southeast Asia.
Gazprom is the world's largest company in terms of natural gas reserves and production output, with gas delivered to consumers in Russia and more than 30 other countries. The Company is among Russia's four biggest oil producers and has the largest installed capacity for thermal energy in the country. Gazprom also holds the leading position in the global thermal energy market.
In addition to pursuing an active business development strategy, Gazprom pays great attention to social projects. The Company supports numerous sports organizations and events on a national and international scale.