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Bayern Munich and other European clubs stepping up in face of refugee crisis

Clubs are stepping up as the current refugee crisis hits Europe.

Matthias Hangst/Getty Images

On Thursday, Bayern Munich sent out a press release declaring the steps they were taking to help meet the challenge of the recent refugee influx into the country of Germany. As one of the richest and most powerful clubs in Europe, Bayern can help lead by example and by bringing the message to the masses outside of Germany.

"We at FC Bayern consider it our socio-political responsibility to help displaced and needy children, women and men, supporting and assisting them in Germany," said club CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge.

  • The club will donate €1 million from a charity friendly to support refugee projects. Bavarian interior minister Joachim Herrmann and Mayor of Munich Dieter Reiter will be involved in helping the club decide what those projects are.
  • "Training camps" will be established with the help of local authorities. Kids will take part in training at FC Bayern, receive German lessons, meals, and a kit.
  • During the next match against Augsburg, players will walk onto the field hand-in-hand with a German child and a refugee child as a "mark of support for the integration of refugees".
  • FC Bayern's charity branch, FC Bayern Hilfe eV, will also work on various projects.

While FC Bayern have made the splashiest announcement regarding their work for the refugees, they are far from the only club doing something positive with their platform.

  • Portuguese giants FC Porto have sent a letter to UEFA President Michel Platini inviting all of the other clubs involved in the group stage of the 2015-16 Champions League to donate €1 per ticket sold in their first home games. "FC Porto is a sporting club and the social standards the club lives by mean no one is indifferent to the dramatic situation thousands of family are going through, as they often pay with their own lives for a chance at searching for the safety they lack in their home countries."
  • St. Pauli have invited over 1,000 refugees to their upcoming friendly with Borussia Dortmund.
  • Jerome Boateng, Ilkay Gündogan, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Mesut Ozil, and Toni Kroos engaged in a DFB video urging people to stand up against violence and xenophobia.
  • Javi Martinez visited the Munich train station to meet with many refugee families. All reports have said that the people of Munich have been incredibly supportive and accommodating to them.
  • Other clubs across Germany have been engaging in efforts to help support and integrate the refugees into German society.
  • Supporter groups across Germany have been unfurling "Refugees Welcome" banners in the stands at Bundesliga matches.
  • Former Schalke star and German international Gerald Asamoah may have said it best in this video released by Schalke. "We have to stand up. Otherwise, we'll achieve nothing."

(As a plea to you, please keep any and all discussion on this topic civil. Bavarian Football Works has a 100% zero tolerance policy for racist, sexist, homophobic, religiophobia, or xenophobia. We unfortunately had to ban one commenter already regarding this topic. Please, do not force our hand, again. While it rarely comes out, we feel no pity when we have to execute the BANhammer.)

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