With five nations represented and two through to the knockout stages, Africa has a huge presence at the World Cup. Prior to the tournament Western Union invited PASS ambassador Patrick Vieira to Senegal, the place of his birth, to announce the start of funding for a new project.

In collaboration with UNICEF, funds from Western Union’s PASS initiative, a project that sees every pass in the UEFA Europa League turned into funds for better education, will support the transition of 200 adolescents from primary to secondary education in Senegal. The trip saw a visit to a UNICEF-supported school in Dakar, where Vieira met young leaders of the school and taught a reading lesson before playing a football match in the schoolyard.

Patrick Vieira said, “I have been proud to support the Western Union PASS initiative since September 2012 and I was really happy to come back again to Senegal to learn more about the initiative and see the impact of UNICEF education programmes. Senegal is a young country and providing a quality education for the country’s youth is critical for Senegal’s growth and development. This funding is significant because it will help more children stay in school and complete their secondary education, allowing them to reach their potential. It’s great to see PASS funding being spent in Senegal and football making a real difference in young people’s lives."