Rafa Nadal visited Aldeas Infantiles SOS facilities in Sant Adriŕ del Besňs (Barcelona) where Rafa Nadal Foundation has launched the program called “Integration and Sport” together with the NGO. During the afternoon, the tennis player was with more than thirty children and teenagers who are into the program, the aim of which is to strengthen the social and family environment of children who are at risk of social exclusion through education and sports practice.
During the visit, the tennis player and his mother, Ana María Parera, who is the president of Rafa Nadal Foundation, were supported by Javier Martín Burillo Deputy Chairman of Aldeas Infantiles SOS Spain. The actresses Paz Vega and Nastassja Kinski and the actor Freddie Highmore, also wanted not to miss the chance of getting a first-hand look at this project. All of them will also take part in the solidarity day "Together for Integration", which Rafa Nadal Foundation has organised together with Invest for children. All of the funds raised will be addressed to fund the project “Integration and Sport”
According to Rafa Nadal himslef, "I am really happy today because we can see what the Foundation has achieved. Since we started with it, our goal has been to help children through sport. This synergy between our two organisations will help children living in Barcelona and Granada, but we hope to get to many other places in our country. I would also like to thank Aldeas Infantiles and particularly, Javier, for this cooperation for the good of third parties, as well as Paz, Nastassja and Freddie for being here today with us, since their support is really important. Their attendance makes this event be even more special."
The sport like a tool of integration
The program ‘Integration and Sport’, which started last September, is currently implemented in Aldeas Infantiles SOS Centres of Granada and Sant Adriŕ del Besňs (Barcelona) and has, for the time being, a total of 40 participants from 6 to 18 years of age. In three years time, it is expected to be implemented in other six centres which the NGO has in Spain, in order to offer the same opportunity to more than 250 kids.
The program combines socioeducational activities with different sports, depending on the tastes and needs of each participant. According to Laura Fuertes, who is responsible for the project, “we want to include in their lives some of the key elements of sport such as the existence of limits and rules, the importance of effort, commitment and teamwork, as well as being passionate about everything we do”.