AFC Awards

AFC Dream Asia Awards 2019 winners announced 

Kuala Lumpur: The Japan Inclusive Football Federation (NGO), Shell Qatar’s Koora Time Programme (Corporate) and Nepali journalist and filmmaker, Bhojraj Bhat (Individual) won the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Dream Asia Awards 2019 held in conjunction with Wednesday’s AFC Social Responsibility Conference in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

The three worthy winners, who were chosen from a record 27 strong applicants this year, will receive USD$10,000, enabling them to bolster their social responsibility programmes alongside the AFC.

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Chairman of the AFC Social Responsibility Committee, Mr Zaw Zaw said: “Social Responsibility is a key focus area for the AFC and already, through the AFC Dream Asia Foundation and these awards, we have witnessed the incredible strides and growth of our efforts as one united Asian footballing family, to use football as a powerful tool for social development.

“The record 27 applicants received this year reinforces that our spirit of partnership is stronger than ever, and we are in the best possible position to fulfil our purpose to empower communities and inspire hope through football.”

Japan Inclusive Football Federation – NGO

JIFF was established in April 2016 as an affiliate member of the Japan Football Association, with the aim to create an inclusive community through football, one which champions equal and active participation for all, regardless of ability.

Taking a partnership approach, the JIFF works hand-in-hand with seven affiliate members to engage various disability groups in Japan, further underlining the importance of inclusiveness and diversity.

And to foster a greater sense of community, the JIFF has staged various engaging programmes including the JIFF Inclusive Football Festa, FutbolNet Methodology training for instructors, numerous coach education courses in partnership with the Barça Foundation and the Financial Assistance Programme for the Hearing Impaired.

Shelter Ashraya Nepal (Silver)
Shanghai Love and Grace Sports Club (Bronze)
Childreach Nepal (Bronze)

Shell Qatar Koora Time Programme (QAT) – Corporate

Koora Time Programme is a youth football initiative created by the Qatar Football Association and Shell Qatar, designed to improve the health and wellbeing of Qatar’s youth through football. It serves to break the barriers of physical activity and expand the opportunities and spaces to spread the love of the game in a fun and non-competitive environment.

As the country’s only football and education initiative, the Koora Time Programme continues to deliver the highest levels of engagement, benefitting more than 100,000 children across Qatar since its launch in 2012.

A major contributor to the larger national health and fitness agenda, the success of the programme is evident as participants saw lower levels of BMI and Fat Mass while their knowledge of healthy living significantly increased.

Volkswagen Group China (Silver)
Sun Ai Carpet (Bronze)

Bhojraj Bhat (NEP) – Individual

Filmmaker Bhojraj Bhat made international headlines with his moving 2015 documentary Sunakali, which cast the spotlight on a group of aspiring teenage female footballers from the remote and mountainous district of Mugu in Nepal.

The documentary was shown in more than 130 film festivals across Europe, and also won more than 20 awards. Bhat’s authentic portrayal of the challenges faced by the footballers not only garnered international recognition but paved the way for the girls’ participation in the Donosti Cup in Spain.

In highlighting their compelling story, Bhat continues to advocate social change and best encapsulates the power of the beautiful game as a tool to inspire hope and to thrive against-all-odds.

Alireza Beiranvand (Silver)

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