|Jerusalem United as 160 Arab and Jewish Children Come Together|
Young players from all Jerusalem's communities came
One hundred and sixty Jewish and Arab children from neighborhoods throughout Jerusalem took part in a unique soccer tournament called "Football for All" to mark the end of International Human Rights Week on December 18. The tournament was organized by Hapoel Katamon Jerusalem, one of three professional teams in Israel set up by fans, and supported and funded by NIF's Kick Racism Out of Israeli Football campaign.
Hapoel Katamon Jerusalem's social initiative runs a neighborhood league in Jerusalem for the city’s diverse population of children. The league stresses social values such as coexistence and tolerance.
The tournament began in Jerusalem's Sacher Park where current and former Hapoel Jerusalem stars spoke to the Jewish and Arab children and gave them playing tips. The stars kept stressing the message that in soccer everybody has an equal opportunity. The final of the tournament was played in Teddy Stadium. Among the 2,000 spectators watching the tournament final was Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat.
Former Hapoel Jerusalem star Michelle Dayan said, "Young players don't notice skin color, race or religion. Everybody on the pitch is equal whether they are Jews or Arabs."