Help us make a difference!

Rome hosts 11th European Football Conference

October 09, 2012

The Special Olympics European Football Conference took place between October 5th and 7th involving 46 participants from 29 countries.

300 x 200 soee football conf

29 Countries Represented

A total of forty six participants from twenty nine (29) countries took part in this year's Football Conference. Special guests of the Conference included: William Gaillard (UEFA) Michel Sablon (Belgian FA & UEFA),  Gianni Rivera (FIGC & SO Italy Ambassador) Maurizio Beretta (Serie A President), Andrea Abodi (Serie B president), Piara Power (FARE) and football managers from 7 Football Federations  - Belgium, Denmark, Georgia, Iceland, Switzerland, Turkey and Italy. The conference took place at the CONI center “Giulio Onesti” in Rome as part of Special Olympics Europe Eurasia Football Development Project supported by UEFA.

The conference discussed several issues including co-operation with Football Associations, coaching players with intellectual disabilities and creating more opportunities for players with intellectual disabilities at all ability levels through expansion of grassroots football, U12 football and Unified Football.


italy fa president 300x200

2013 - 2014 Projects

Several new initiatives for 2013 - 2014 were agreed. These included: Under 12 football project; three 7-a-side football invitational tournaments to be held in Georgia (May 2013), Sweden (July 2013) and in Belarus (Sept 2013); 11-a-side Unified Football event in Poland as qualification for Special Olympics Unified Cup in Brazil; Programmes for European Football Week (18-26 May 2013); and overview of Football at 2014 Special Olympics European Games in Antwerp.

Italy FA award 300 x 200

(l-r) Gianni Riviera, Italian Football Federation, Mirek Krogulec, Special Olympics Europe, William Gaillard, UEFA.

Appreciation Awards

Four National Football Associations, Belgium, Denmark, Italy and Turkey, received an award of appreciation from Special Olympics in recognition of their outstanding work with Special Olympics in their own country.

danish FA award 300x200

(l-r) Mirek Krogulec, Special Olympics Europe Eurasia, Jorgen Kjeldergaard, Special Olympics Denmark, Tina Enstrom, Danish Football Federation, William Gaillard, UEFA.

UEFA Support

Special Olympics Europe Eurasia is a core partner of UEFA Football and Social Responsibility for 2012-17 under the "football for all abilities” domain.  The partnership will continue to develop grassroots opportunities for Special Olympics athletes.

William Gaillard, from UEFA:
"Special Olympics is part of the UEFA family. The process is often more important than the result, and it is in fact what Special Olympics can teach football today."

Support Special Olympics

Help us reach one more athlete.


Become a Volunteer

Find out about the many ways you can get involved in the Special Olympics programs nearest you. There are 58 country-level offices in the Europe/Eurasia region.


Follow Us

Help us reach out to one more athlete.

Donate »

Find events near you and learn about volunteer opportunities at one of our 226 worldwide locations.


Videos and Photos

DifferentBarry Cairns tells what it's like to be a Special Olympics athlete.Watch Video »

Videos and Photos

SpeechlessSpecial Olympics changed her life in deep and meaningful ways.Watch Video »

Videos and Photos

Summer GamesAround the world, months of practice are paying off.See Slideshow »

Videos and Photos

Photos on FBSee photos and comments from our supporters around the world.See Photos »

Videos and Photos

Hope in HaitiLeo and Gedeon play in makeshift fields, tent towns, wherever they can.Watch Video »

Videos and Photos

Finding His VoiceDavid Egan has always dreamed big. Now look at him!Learn More »

Videos and Photos

Sport Teaches UsOur life-changing work is fueled by the power of sport.Watch Video »

Videos and Photos

Making SuccessDoctors said Lani is “never going to achieve anything.” Learn More »

Videos and Photos

Very Very SpecialMusic helps Special Olympics make an impact worldwide.See Slideshow »

Videos and Photos

Around The WorldGreat photos of Special Olympics events and people.See Slideshow »

Videos and Photos

Focus on ChangeWhat we do can't be done without our partners.See Slideshow »

Videos and Photos

Power of SportsSports are a powerful way to change our athlete’s lives.See Slideshow »

Videos and Photos

What We DoSports, health, education, community and more.See Slideshow »

Videos and Photos

Who We AreWe are athletes, families, celebs, volunteers and more.See Slideshow »

Videos and Photos

Summer SportsOur athletes run, jump, swim and score in summer.See Slideshow »

Videos and Photos

Playing UnifiedUnified Sports reveals strengths in every team member.Watch Video »

Videos and Photos

Healthier AthletesOur free health clinics are making a huge difference.Watch Video »

Videos and Photos

Deon NamisebHe's a speaker and role model. It didn't start that way in Namibia.Learn More »

Special Olympics Blog

The Start of the Solution

Young people from around the globe with and without intellectual disabilities are coming together at the SOGenUin Summit as part of the 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games with one goal - to change the world.


read more »

Posted on 2015-07-23 by Natalie

go to blog »


Special Olympics - Become a Fan

Your Donation Helps Transform Lives Through Sports!

Become a Sustaining Partner today - monthly giving is an easy and convenient way to support trainings and competitions all year long.

For a limited time, when you become a Sustaining Partner a generous donor will match your generosity with an additional $50 gift to Special Olympics.