Qatar Foundation hosted the international football star, Frédéric Oumar Kanouté, on 6 June, 2013. A welcoming committee received Kanouté, who currently plays for the Chinese Super League team Beijing Guoan FC, at the Qatar Foundation Visitors Center.
During a glittering career the French-born Malian footballer has played for several of Europe’s top teams including Tottenham Hotspur FC, Lyon FC, and Sevilla FC, as well as Mali’s national team. A devout Muslim and devotee of many humanitarian causes, he established the Kanouté Foundation in 2006 to promote causes close to his heart. In 2010 the charity opened its flagship project, the Sakina Children's Village in Mali, which currently houses over 60 orphans and provides them with access to education, health and sports facilities. Kanouté recently arrived in Qatar to accept the position of Goodwill Ambassador for Qatar Charity.
He was introduced to Qatar Foundation’s many educational initiatives, community development plans and scientific research programmes through a presentation which outlined the vision and mission of Qatar Foundation. He was then briefed on Qatar Foundation’s various sustainability initiatives and climate action solutions. After the presentation, he was shown an impressive 3D scale model of the current buildings and construction projects underway at Qatar Foundation.
Commenting on the occasion, Kanouté said, “I was extremely impressed with Qatar Foundation’s vision to move from a carbon economy to a knowledge economy by investing in education, research and community development. The visit has been inspirational, as it is similar to the work we do at the Kanouté Foundation, where we focus on education and development in Mali. Our beliefs at Kanouté Foundation echo that of Qatar Foundation. We believe that the best way to ensure a sustainable future is to invest in education and in our people.”
He added, “Qatar Foundation is playing a very important role in the development of Qatar and the region by supplying a high level of education which in turn provides youth with an incredible amount of opportunities in Qatarand globally.”
As the visit drew to a close, Kanouté signed the visitor’s book and presented Qatar Foundation representatives with a signed football shirt.