Jewish and Arab children join together in an NIF organized soccer tournament.
More than 360 Jerusalem teenagers kicked off the neighborhood soccer league at the city’s Teddy Stadium in the festive opening round of matches during Chanukah.
The neighborhood league is operated by Hapoel Katamon with support from NIF's Kick Racism Out of Israel Football (KIO) campaign. Most of the participants come from disadvantaged families in Jewish and Arab neighborhoods of Jerusalem. The tournament stressed the importance of fair play and an equal playing field for all regardless of race, religion and gender. It is part of NIF's campaign to promote tolerance and reduce racism and violence in Israeli society.
Watch highlights from the tournament:
The latest figures published by NIF show a sharp decline in racist behavior by fans at Premier League soccer matches in Israel. Data collected by volunteers found a 48% decrease in racist incidents in the first half of the 2012 season and a 66% drop over the past two seasons. KIO’s volunteers also reported that Beitar Jerusalem's fans (traditionally the country's most racist fans) were involved in 43% fewer racist incidents so far this season.