Footballers joining fight against gender-based violence

They will wear T-shirts bearing the words 'Stop Gender Violence'

Footballers will be wearing T-shirts bearing the words 'Stop Gender Violence' ahead of every game as part of efforts to raise awareness. 

As they walk onto the pitch before matches, players will also be holding banners with the same words, the Malta Football Association announced this morning. 

Unveilling a video featuring various players from both the men's and women's national teams, association president Norman Darmanin Demajo said that the MFA had an obligation to use the popularity of the game to raise awareness. 

Addressing those present for the launch of the joint campaign between MFA and the President’s Foundation for the Wellbeing of Society, President Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca welcomed the initiative, insisting that such violence robbed people of their dignity.

She added that while it was often assumed that women were always the victims, men were often also at the receiving end of such abuse, as were those within the LGBTIQ community. 

"There are a lot of people who are suffering in silence and I hope this encourages them to speak out. We cannot expect the authorities to do all the work but each and every one of us needs to do something," the President said, adding that she hoped the video would go viral so that the campaign could also reach other societies around the world. 

The t-shirts and banner will be used for the first time on Sunday before a match between the Ħamrun and Gżira teams, with players from both sides committed being part of the initiative. 

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