21st of November 2012 Author: Johnny Karp
An educational campaign for professional sportspeople on the risks entailed by match fixing, which has the financial support of the European online betting industry, this week attracted a new, powerful partner - the European Commission which will co-finance the initiative.
The total funding for the campaign targeting 15 000 young athletes in 13 countries and at least 10 different sports amounts to Euro 500,000, 46 percent of which will be supplied by the EU. The other 54 percent will be covered by the EGBA, RGA and ESSA with 41 percent, 10 percent and 3 percent respectively.
The campaign will start on the first day of the New Year and run for 18 months. Thanks to the new supporter, it will enable an additional number of ex professional players to educate their peers through face to face meetings about the sports rules regarding betting and match fixing.
Talking about the initiative, Sigrid LignÃ©, Secretary General of the EGBA and the campaign co founder, said: 'The EGBA was a pioneer of this project back in 2010 with EU Athletes and as the main private financial partner we are delighted that the Commission's co-funding is endorsing our work done over those last 2 years.'
In addition, Jeff Reymonds, Secretary General of EU Athletes, commented: 'The financing from the EU and the betting industry will allow the players' associations to dramatically expand their education programmes all around Europe. Educating young players about the dangers of match fixing is a vital component in protecting sporting integrity and the support of our partners will make all the difference.'
Another comment arrived from Clive Hawkswood, Chief Executive of the RGA, who said: 'When the RGA and our members first funded the UK Professional Players Federation betting education programme in February 2010, it was a new concept, but one we felt could play a significant role in the fight against potential match fixing. With that experience we were glad to support the EU Athletes bid for funding so that comparable training will be made available across Europe.'
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