With the aim of empowering women and girl through cricket, the International Cricket Council (ICC) recently announced the extension of its partnership with UNICEF till the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup 2020. The renewed association will help UNICEF leverage ICC’s platformto raise fundsthat can be used to create a stronger impact for women and girls, while increasing global awareness about its work in the field of children’s rights, in cricket-playing countries.
UNICEF had previously raised a sum of USD 180,000 during the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2019, as part of One Day 4 Children,which is to be used to fund a girls’ cricket project in Afghanistan.
The program is scheduled to run for an entire year, during which, a new competitive cricket competition for school-aged girls will be organised,while providing training to 120 teachers,along with the required cricket kit. It will also consist of a community outreach programme that will work alongside elderly members to highlight the incredible impact that girls playing cricket can have.
The funds raised during the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup 2020 will also be invested in a number of programs in cricket playing countries, which includes a pilot project that will encourage girls in Sri Lanka to participate in cricket,while creating peace in communities.
Fans can also contribute in the programs through donations when buying tickets and through in-stadium activations, to help change lives and create social impact. An online facility will also be provided throughout the event for global fans to contribute.
ICC CEO Manu Sawhney said, “We are delighted to extend our partnership with UNICEF to the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup. I want us to harness the extraordinary reach of our sport to empower women and girls around the world through cricket and using ICC events as a fundraising platform enables us to do that.”
“Sport for development and in particular cricket can be a powerful tool to transform lives and the projects in Afghanistan and Sri Lanka are designed to have a long-term positive impact with teachers being trained to deliver cricket to girls for years to come,” he added.
The partnership between ICC and UNICEF began in 2015, as part of the former’s global community outreach programme ‘Cricket 4 Good’. Till date, the initiative, along with the donations accrued, have helped create immense positive impact for children, in several cricket playing countries,particularly helping empower women and girls in cricket.