The Football Federation of Armenia (FFA) is one of the eleven UEFA member associations that were selected to participate in the UEFA child safeguarding mentoring programme. UEFA and Terre des hommes (Tdh) launched the six-month long pilot programme in January 2021, aiming to individually support the national associations in their child safeguarding efforts and strengthen the existing safeguards.
As part of the programme, the newly appointed child safeguarding focal point of FFA, Amalya Grigoryan, has developed the Federation’s child safeguarding policy and its procedures, with the strong support of Vladislav Oleatovschi, the UEFA appointed mentor from Tdh Moldova.
“Child safeguarding should become an important component in football. The UEFA mentoring programme and toolkit are a great starting point for national associations that don’t have any policy or procedures at place,” says Amalya Grigoryan.
During a two-day workshop on 23-24 July, the FFA Child safeguarding policy was presented to the staff of the federation and the administration and coaches of the FFA first and second division football clubs. Introductory presentations about UEFA child safeguarding principles and the issue of safeguarding were made by guest speaker Vladislav Oleatovschi.
“The experience of working with colleagues from FFA was extremely enriching and a very rewarding one. I appreciate the hospitality, professionalism, and the openness of the participants. We had challenging discussions and analysed various situations or cases, and what counted the most was the keenness to find answers and solutions,” mentions Vladislav Oleatovschi.
“This introductory seminar had a strong impact on the participants. They willingly agreed to be part of the sustainable future of Armenian football and committed to support the child safeguarding policy in the work that they do”, concluded Amalya Grigoryan.
Overall, interesting and valuable discussion took place among the participants of the workshop. Both the administrative staff and the coaches were very active in the discussions. They all stressed the importance of having a policy at place, which can become a proper ground for safeguarding processes in the future.
All the participants were also informed that, in case of any emergency, they can reach the FFA focal point at any time; an email address (firstname.lastname@example.org) is available for urgent reports or concerns as well. The FFA webpage will also develop a separate section about child safeguarding and a hotline to write the concerns directly.
As a further step, the FFA Child safeguarding policy and procedures will be validated by the FFA Executive committee.
Watch a report about the workshop (in Armenian)