Clarence Seedorf has joined the UEFA Children’s Foundation Board of Directors.
Seedorf, who remains the only player to win the UEFA Champions League with three different clubs, has devoted himself to social projects throughout his football career and continues to do so after he finished, using the power of sport to inspire positive change.
“We are delighted that Clarence has joined the UEAF Children’s Foundation family,” said UEFA President Aleksander Ceferin, who is also the president of the UEFA Children’s Foundation.
“Not only does he carry an inspiring story as one of the most successful footballers of his generation, but he also continually uses his expertise to help make the world a better place for others. Having Clarence on our team will be incredibly beneficial to the foundation in the work we do together to improve the lives of underprivileged children.” all over the world “.
Giving back to the community
Seedorf, who speaks six languages and has represented the Netherlands 87 times, added: “It is a great honor and a pleasure to join the UEFA Children’s Foundation. Your job.”
“I have spoken with President Schwerin for some time now and am grateful that he has embraced the idea of me joining the team. I hope we can enjoy this relationship for the long haul, do great things and give back to communities around the world.”
Clarence, welcome to the UEFA Children’s Foundation. How do you see the evolution of your role on the board of directors?
“I think joining the Foundation is a good development of my relationship with UEFA, which has been going on for some time, and together we understand the importance of football in society and in the lives of children.
I have been involved with organizations for over 20 years and this has given me insight into what it takes to make an impact and create projects that make a difference.
But first, I want to understand a lot better and learn from where the organization is now and how I can bring my knowledge and experience on board to achieve the goals of the organization and ultimately improve what is there now and bring added value as a member of the team. I am really looking forward to it and am very proud of this nomination.”
How important is it for players and athletes to use their influence as a force for good?
“Well, a lot of players are really involved in solidarity organizations, whether it’s their own or they lend their names to other foundations or organizations.
It’s a very personal thing and some of them are more involved than others, some of them are visionary in what they do and are involved in the decision-making processes and some of them prefer to be more behind the scenes or be more conservative.
Nobody has an obligation to show their face, but I think we all have an obligation to add value to all those who have given us so much over the years.
I’ve always seen a lot of willingness from players to get involved in good causes and I’m happy to continue doing my part in that, without comparing or expecting others to expect. I think we should start with ourselves and try to give as much as possible.”
Who has been your inspiration and role model throughout your life?
“The first people are my parents, of course. They have always been very positive role models in my life. I would also say some of the teachers I used to work with in school and when I was young in football.
Nelson Mandela, in particular, has always played and continues to play a very central role in my mission – to stand up to situations and start a path to follow as we continue the struggle for the less fortunate and for a more peaceful world.
It is my belief that peace comes through education, and that sport should be its backbone, especially in the early stages of life. These are the basic elements that I believe will change the world. We have the ability and the means to make that difference as a team.
I think the role that players play today, even more than 20 years ago, is to be positive role models and realize that children are watching us and following our actions and behaviour.
This role model has always continued to keep me on the right path – this spiritual path, in fact, to add value where possible.”
Mandela spoke about the power of sport to inspire change in the world. How important can a social tool be?
“He has been able to change the face of an entire country and the understanding of unity through sport. So it is just a very powerful tool, effective and effective when used correctly.
This is what I think we should aim for: to create and incubate very strong and sustainable projects that use sport as an essential tool to improve children’s development and their lives in general.
It has been scientifically proven that playing sports between the ages of five and twelve helps children’s cognitive and creative development – it should be a right for every child.”