“Education for all,” says Liverpool forward

Super striker: Last season, Mo Salah scored a total of 44 goals for Liverpool. © AP

Do athletes set the best example? Mo Salah has given a speech to the United Nations calling for better education for refugee children. He is one of many athletes using their fame for good.

What’s happening

His teammates celebrated. Fans watching at home cheered. Mo Salah had just scored a hat trick against Leeds. “He might be the best in the world”, a thrilled commentator said.

Three days later, the striker was affecting the world again, as he made a speech standing up for refugees.

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Mo Salah was speaking at the UN where he is an ambassador for a programme that helps refugee children get a good education.

But last week, Salah explained that the coronavirus had made it difficult to help them.

“Now as we face Covid-19, education is everything to refugee children and they should not be left out,” he explained.

During the pandemic, 90% of children were affected by school closures. This includes about seven million refugees.

“Let’s make sure all children can go to school and achieve their dreams,” the striker finished.

Salah is not the only footballer to use his fame to help people. Over the summer, Manchester United player Marcus Rashford convinced the government to provide free school meals for children.

Do athletes set the best example?

Some say…

Yes! Athletes make good role models because they have worked hard to do well in their chosen sport. They are determined and focused. Lots of sports stars have also used their fame for good. Recently Marcus Rashford has helped children in need. British sprinter Dina Asher-Smith has spoken out about body positivity.

Others think…

There are plenty of other famous role models. We should also look to celebrities like Stormzy or activists like Malala Yousafzai. Besides, athletes like Mo Salah are unusual. Most sports personalities are bad role models. For example, Novak Djokovic recently injured a line judge during a tennis game when he was frustrated with his playing.

You Decide

  1. Do we tend to think that everyone gets an education?

Activities

  1. Pick an athlete you admire. Write a short introduction to them and explain why you are impressed with them.

Some People Say...

“Refugee children have been through so much but remain incredibly strong. They have many dreams and hopes, like all children.”

Mo Salah

What do you think?

Word Watch

Mo Salah
An Egyptian footballer. He plays for Liverpool and for the Egyptian international team.
Hat trick
When one person has three successes in a row in a game. In football, it means three goals. In cricket, it is three wickets.
UN
The United Nations. It is an organisation that promotes peace between countries.
Ambassador
Somebody who acts for an organisation. Each country has ambassadors who represent that country abroad.
Free school meals
At the beginning of the lockdown, the UK government promised to help poorer families by giving out free school meals. When the government said they would stop the programme during the holidays, Rashford convinced them to change their decision.
Body positivity
To be confident and happy about your body shape. Dina Asher-Smith has helped young girls to have self-confidence and celebrate other things like skill at sport or success in school.
Malala Yousafzai
An activist for female education. She survived a terrorist attack where she was targeted for standing up for girls and their right to learn in school.

Subjects

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