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Austria and Switzerland to play Neighbouring Countries Challenge Series games on July 17-18.

The third games in the IBF Foundation Blind Football Neighbouring Countries Challenge Series (NCCS), supported by Santen, are coming up soon. This time two Central European countries, Austria and Switzerland, will play in Vienna, Austria, on July 17 and 18. 

The title of the project is “Gemeinsam durch die Krise: Blindenfußball verbindet -powered by IBF Foundation and Santen”, which roughly translates to “Getting through the crisis together thanks to blind football – powered by IBF Foundation and Santen”. The friendly internationals will be played at the Rugby Union Donau Wien in Vienna and the matches will start at 6 pm on July 17 and at 11 am on July 18 (local time).

This event will comply with the standards set by both the Austrian Disability Sports Association and the Swiss Disability Sports Association in line with government regulations requiring a negative COVID-19 test that is no older than 48 hours.

In addition, the organizer, Österreichischer Behindertensportverband ( is arranging on-line live streaming on YouTube and will also provide audio description for fans with a visual impairment.

The goals of the IBF Foundation Blind Football Neighbouring Countries Challenge Series, supported by the Santen grant programme, are:

- to help reactivate blind football globally as we move towards a new reality following the global pandemic caused by COVID-19;

- to assist countries to overcome the financial difficulties they may face in returning to international competition;

- to present a positive image of our sport to the world and demonstrate that blind football, with proper health, hygiene and safety protocols and procedures in place, can offer a safe, virus-free environment for visually impaired athletes.

Grants of up to 10,000 US Dollars were available for projects involving air transportation, while projects involving travel by land were eligible for a grant of up to 5,000 US Dollars.

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