Western Union and Patrick Vieira launch campaign to turn tweets into education
Friday March 13, 2015 at 12:29pm
Western Union is giving football fans the opportunity to turn their passion for their club into life-changing education for youth across the world. Western Union, the global payment service and global partner of the UEFA Europa League has launched its Show Your PASSion campaign, which will convert each tweet or retweet of a fan hashtag during the knock-out stages of this year’s UEFA Europa League into better education for vulnerable children across the world. In collaboration with UNICEF, the Show Your PASSion campaign will build on the existing PASS initiative which currently turns every pass on the pitch during the UEFA Europa League into better education. The initiative aims to deliver one million passes for better education by the end of this year’s UEFA Europa League final. Now fans will be able to support the cause as well, by simply including an allocated fan hashtag in their tweets. Every club remaining in the tournament has been allocated one pre-existing supporter hashtag relevant to its fan base – for example, #COYB for Everton F.C fans or #ForzaViola for ACF Fiorentina. Western Union will count each time this hashtag is used on Twitter, including retweets, for 48 hours around match-day, as long as that club remains in the tournament. The PASS campaign will convert every relevant tweet into support for UNICEF education programs for disadvantaged children around the world. So far in the tournament, fans have already contributed 270,066 passes through the use of social hashtags. Patrick Vieira (pictured), Arsenal FC and Juventus Football Club legend and World Cup winner, is supporting Show Your PASSion as an ambassador for the PASS initiative which supports education in his country of birth, Senegal. Speaking at the launch of Show Your PASSion, Vieira said: “When it comes to the knock-out stage of any competition, the fans make a huge difference at home and away. Not every fan can be at the ground, but Show Your PASSion means every fan can make a difference through making their voice heard on Twitter. I’ve seen first-hand the difference the PASS campaign and UNICEF are making in the lives of world’s youth and I encourage fans to Show Your PASSion and support the campaign.” Marc Audrit, Head of Brand at Western Union said: “We know that the passion of the crowd will play a big part in deciding who makes it all the way to the final. Throughout the three seasons of our sponsorship, the players’ passes on the pitch have helped Western Union’s PASS initiative fund more than 500,000 passes for better education, delivered through our partnership with UNICEF. To reach our final goal of one million passes – just like the teams that make it through the knock-out stages - the support of the fans will be get us over the line.” The Show Your PASSion campaign follows Western Union’s successful social media campaign #PassForSchool where fans were encouraged to take a trip down memory lane and share a childhood sporting photo of themselves. All photos shared contributed funding for a pass to with famous football faces such as Tim Howard, Patrick Vieira and Jay Jay Okocha involved. The PASS initiative is a key part of Western Union’s broader Education for Better program, launched at the UN General Assembly in September 2012, which includes philanthropic grants from the Western Union Foundation, advocacy, products/services, volunteer and marketing support for secondary and vocational education. Funding has already been delivered on the ground to UNICEF in Brazil, Jamaica, Senegal, Nigeria, China, Morocco and Turkey, with support from Western Union for education programs in Colombia, Mexico and Romania set to begin in 2015.