The Football Association of Ireland is to allocate 2,000 tickets to the Ukrainian refugee community in Ireland for the upcoming UEFA Nations League game against Ukraine at the Aviva Stadium on Wednesday, June 8th.
The FAI has also committed to a donation of €100,000 to the Irish Red Cross Ukraine Crisis appeal from the proceeds of ticket sales for the fixture.
The FAI will make the complimentary tickets available to Ukrainian refugees who have recently arrived in Ireland as the crisis escalates in their country.
The association said it will liaise directly with community groups and especially grassroots football clubs who have welcomed Ukrainian refugees recently into their communities.
“On behalf of the Board and staff of the FAI and everyone involved with Irish football, I am delighted to announce that we will invite 2,000 Ukrainian refugees already in Ireland to the game and we look forward to welcoming them and their team to the Aviva Stadium next month. I am also pleased to confirm a €100,000 contribution to the Irish Red Cross Ukraine Crisis appeal from the ticket sales for the game,” said FAI chief executive Jonathan Hill.
“We have continuously offered our support and solidarity with the Ukraine Football Association, their players and supporters since this crisis developed earlier this year and this donation is, we hope, a welcome gesture on behalf of our game, the Ireland supporters and the Irish people.”
FAI president Gerry McAnaney said: “Football is only secondary to the current situation in Ukraine and the crisis their people are going through but this donation and the allocation of tickets to Ukrainian families now resident in Ireland will, we hope, consolidate our support for the Ukrainian people. I know the Irish people will welcome and support this initiative.”
Speaking on behalf of the Irish Red Cross, head of fundraising Charlie Lamson said: “This gesture represents absolutely tremendous support for the Irish Red Cross as we work to assist Ukrainians within Ukraine and the surrounding region – but also here in Ireland. Over the past two months we have had the privilege of providing assistance to Ukrainians arriving at Irish ports and airports as well as within communities throughout the country. To be recognised on this day of community and exchange is so incredibly important to this ongoing effort.”