As part of the Grassroots and citizenship Commission, the Olympique de Marseille has joined forces with Wash United, a virtual football club, that works worldwide to increase access to drinking water and to promote sanitation and hygiene for everyone, everywhere.
“The 6th World Water Forum is proud to support these initiatives. The outstanding work that has already been done by Wash United has proven that sport is a strong vehicle for communication and youth awareness” says Martine Vassal, president of the Commission and Deputy Mayor of Marseille.
According to Wash United, football is an important vector in Africa, where problems linked to drinking water kills more than malaria or HIV. Several big names in football are already involved in Wash United such as Didier Drogba, Michael Ballack, Arjen Robben, the Bayern Munich, the foundations of the Real Madrid and of the FC Barcelona … Since Marseille is hosting the 6th World Water Forum in 2012, it was natural for the OM to associate with this transaction. Thus, during the 2011/12 season, a player will be the sponsor of United Wash., and a meeting of the championship will be dedicated to this cause.
Thorsten Kiefer, director of Wash United, welcomed the partnership. “Through football, we want to develop awareness and educate young people in Africa. When Didier Drogba tells the young to wash their hands regularly, he is much more listened to than any other teacher” he says. He then exchanged a Wash United T-Shirt with Cedric Dufoix, Secretary General of the OM, who handed him a T-Shirt of the OM flocked “Wash United”, in the presence of Martine Vassal, Deputy Mayor of Marseille and Philippe Lacoste from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.