Auction of World Cup 2002 memorabilia to benefit UNICEF
The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) will receive the proceeds from an "unprecedented" online auction of football memorabilia set to run through the entire 2002 World Cup, the UN agency announced today.
Among the items up for bid in the Internet auction, which is sponsored by the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA), are gear signed by Pelé as well as original home jerseys from the United Kingdom, Italy and South Africa signed by those countries' entire national soccer teams.
The auction is part of a series of events at the 2002 FIFA World Cup in Japan and the Republic of Korea devoted to children, according to UNICEF. FIFA has dedicated the tournament to young people under the banner "Say Yes for Children" - the first time the World Cup has been devoted to a humanitarian cause.
These activities constitute "the first major event in a global alliance forged last year by UNICEF and FIFA that promises to have far-reaching benefits for children," the agency said. The UNICEF-FIFA partnership is also operating at the country level, where the football association is supporting agency efforts to use sport in a variety of ways, including rehabilitating children in post-conflict situations and educating young people about HIV/AIDS.