Today Switzerland, tomorrow the world

One thing needs to be underlined first and foremost: while the canton of Valais in Switzerland should remain the focus, the Sepp Blatter Foundation, which first saw the light of day in 2006, should start operating on a wider national and international basis in the future, whilst still remaining true to its original principles.

The idea is a simple one: if we work together, we can help to make a better future. And the future is already within our grasp. The future means making the world a brighter place, setting a shining example for the next generation, embodying ideals. And football of course is the school of life – no other sport is so deeply integrated into modern-day living.

"My most important goal is to bring the socio-cultural element of football to our society," FIFA President Joseph S. Blatter outlined last Thursday following a meeting of the board of the Sepp Blatter Foundation. "We are all responsible in social and humanitarian terms. Football can change lives. Football is life, football is happiness. Football is hope."

Sepp Blatter created the Foundation back in 2006, with the intention of supporting both football-based and also general humanitarian projects. The Foundation's original work was carried out in the upper Valais canton of Switzerland where Sepp Blatter was born. He is at home here and it is a place where he can be just another person.

It is now time for the charitable foundation to start the next phase of its work. The vision of the Foundation, as agreed by those attending the meeting last week, is that what got off to such a successful start in Valais should now be carried out across Switzerland and around the world.

"Sepp Blatter is by far and away the most popular person from Valais," said Niklaus Furger, Chairman of the Sepp Blatter Foundation and also Mayor of the local municipality of Visp. "He’s the best ambassador that the canton could possibly wish for. From now on we want to make more use of his popularity and his charisma to launch initiatives for the good of humanitarian projects that go beyond borders," he added. Networking with other important international foundations is being explored, and a whole host of projects are being discussed and evaluated. The future looks very promising.

The main thrust of activities is still in Valais, and Visp is, and will continue to remain, the focal point of the Foundation. The 2011 Sepp Blatter Foundation award is going to the two football pitches in the local villages of Wiler and Kippel in the Loesch Valley, both of which were severely damaged by storms and are in need of immediate help. Nikolaus Furger and Foundation board member Corinne Blatter Andenmatten, who is the daughter of Sepp Blatter, have already informed the head of the valley community Beat Rieder about the initiative. In addition, the board will also visit the location once the pitches are in a usable state once again.

The Sepp Blatter Foundation has also decided to support the Turtmann tournament for U-8 – U-11 juniors in the Upper Valais, the 'Cantiamo Oberwallis' singing school and the Upper Valais Migration Forum.