The FARE Network is backing a new campaign by UEFA to raise awareness of its RESPECT message as part of Euro 2012. The ‘Exchange Your Jersey’ programme aims to create a chain of fans across Europe to illustrate how football can bring people together.
It is widely believed that players first began to swap shirts after matches in 1931, after France recorded their first win over England. Delighted by the success, the French players asked the English for their jerseys as a souvenir of the occasion. This practice is now common practice throughout the football world and symbolises a mark of respect and acknowledgement for opponents.
The Exchange Your Jersey site, exchangeyourjersey.com, which was launched last week, is available in nine different languages. Users are able to join and create jersey exchange chains online, and invite their friends and colleagues to participate in the hope of winning prizes, including tickets to Euro 2012 matches and signed shirts and footballs. UEFA is hoping that 100,000 people will sign up to the initiative.
RESPECT is an important element of Euro 2012, and the FARE Network is working with UEFA as its key ‘Respect Diversity’ partner along with our Eastern European partner, Never Again under the banner of ‘Respect Diversity-Football Unites’. As part of this initiative FARE will be providing monitors at all Euro 2012 matches, organising a tour of the mobile Streetkick game, developing a tournament fanzine and implementing a range of education projects.
FARE has already created its own chain and is hoping to encourage as many of its members and supporters to join in with the project. To create your own character, register on exchangeyourjersey.com and join up with the FARE Network chain, by searching for the FARE Network under the search function.
For more information on UEFA’s Respect programme, visit