FIFA World Cup 2010 champion Sergio Ramos of Spain inspires children in Senegal

Just days after becoming a champion as a member of the victorious Spanish national football team at the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa, Sergio Ramos chose to spend his time off the field visiting UNICEF projects in Senegal.

“This week was one of the most special weeks of my life,” he said. “Two of my dreams came true: I won the World Cup, and I was able to travel to Africa and interact with children there.”

In Pout, a village about 60 km from Dakar, Mr. Ramos saw community health programmes that focus on improving the nutrition of mothers and their young children. And at a health post in the village of Keur Seydou, he held and weighed a newborn baby girl named Fatou.

Routine weight check-ups are just one part of the process that helps monitor the growth of local children to detect signs of under-nutrition. Such local health interventions are important in a country where 17 per cent of children under five years of age are chronically undernourished.

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