[Dateline: New York | Author: DPKO]
From 11 June to 11 July 2010, the World Cup takes center stage in all corners of the world, and Haiti is no exception. In the capital, Port-au-Prince, the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH) through its Community Violence Reduction (CVR) Section has set up two large screens in the national football stadium. It’s an opportunity to share a moment of passion for a sport enjoyed nation-wide that transcends politics. In the wake of the devastating 12 January earthquake, this project lends some hope to many communities across the still debris-covered capital.
Days before the opening ceremony, two LCD screens and a 12' satellite dish made their way in MINUSTAH trucks from Haiti's earthquake-damaged international airport and the UN logistics base, to the national football stadium in the heart of Port-au-Prince. Piece by piece and under floodlights, just steps from the ruins of the National Palace, the double-sided screens measuring over 300 sq.ft each, a concert-quality sound system and stage were erected by a team of Haitian technicians, stadium personnel, as well as staff from MINUSTAH-CVR, Movement Control, Communications and Information Technology staff and partner organizations.
In support of the Haitian Government and the National Football Association, MINUSTAH's CVR Section is working in partnership with FilmAid International to bring the entire World Cup live to the Stade Silvio Cator, Haiti's national stadium. Under the slogan "Antre gratis ti cheri" or "Entry is free, my dear", 10,000 tickets are distributed daily free of charge for stadium entry through the Haitian Football Association, an unprecedented event in Haiti.
Partners in this initiative also include Nocturne Productions and Tait Towers who through FilmAid donated the screens and professional performance stage, as well as Telemobile, Fondation Mevs, CIDAC and PSI-Haiti. Throughout the duration of the games, partner organizations will also screen public service announcements, feature films, music videos, children’s movies along with live concerts featuring Haitian musical artists such as RAM, Barikad Crew, and Tifane.
MINUSTAH will also be coordinating with local soccer teams to hold a parallel championship in the stadium and neighboring areas. In partnership with Viva Rio and Renaissance Film, the Community Violence Reduction Section is engaged in an ongoing mini-World Cup with teams from Belair (Bel Air), one of the toughest neighbourhoods of the capital. The 480 players from the ages of 11 and 12 years will make their own "World Cup" with perhaps a different result from the one on the world stage.