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There is a unique sporting contribution to civil society based on sporting values. Sports are focal points for civic engagement, revitalizing civil society across class and cultural identities, mobilizing the youth and enhancing an activity that can promote greater tolerance and understanding.

Sports represent the biggest civil society organization in the world. Virtually every country in the world has a national sport team with many sub-categories of other teams competing for championship. These include the importance of competing while keeping respect for the opponent, expressing individual talents by working as a team, and acknowledgment that there is a higher value, the good of the game, besides individual ambitions. There is also an ultimate willingness to accept authority, no matter how harsh or wrong its judgment.

2012  Friendship Cup:  Building Friendship & Understanding through Soccer

The 2012 Friendship Cup (“the Cup”) is a project created by The International Foundation for Civil Society.  It will feature  friendship soccer matches  between teams from the Middle East with teams from the United States. Soccer is a universal sport that makes a unique sporting contribution to civil society by promoting values that enhance mutual respect and tolerance. Players Learn how to demonstrate their individual talents by working as a team toward a higher value, the good of the game. There is an ultimate willingness to accept authority, no maker how harsh or wrong its judgment. The Friendship Cup 2012 will build the foundation for greater dialogue with Middle Eastern civil societies.  For the first time a Middle Eastern country has been chosen to host the World Cup in 2022.   This will provide  an opportunity for greater understanding between the Muslim and western worlds,  engaging and inspiring millions of young soccer fans across different countries and regions.

Read  the latest on  Soccer and Civil Society  here