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Thursday, June 9, 2011

Kasparov Chess Foundation Europe launched

Chess blog for latest chess news and chess trivia (c) Alexandra Kosteniuk, 2011

Hello everyone,

On Wednesday, at press conference in Brussels, chess great Garry Kasparov announced the European branch of the Kasparov Chess Foundation. 

The branch will be operational from September 19, 2011 and will hope to have the European Union include the game of chess in its education system. “It is our ambition to further realize the dream of bringing chess into classrooms far and wide so that everyone may enjoy the benefits the game offers,” Kasparov said.

Together with Option CEO Jan Callewaert and supported by the European Chess Union (ECU), Garry Kasparov today announced the creation of the Kasparov Chess Foundation Europe. From its headquarters in Brussels, the association has the mission to bring the many educational benefits of chess to children and young people – aged between 6 and 18 – throughout schools in Europe, both public and private, by providing a complete chess curriculum and enrichment programs. The foundation will also promote the study of chess as a cognitive learning tool and organize tournaments and competitions for children and young people.

“I want as many students as possible to discover the game of chess, so they can enjoy the many benefits that the game has to offer. Chess encourages critical thinking, requires intense concentration and discipline, stimulates creativity, helps to solve problems and generally creates a positive competitive spirit. The chess player also learns to take responsibility for his own decisions,” Kasparov said at the press conference this morning in Brussels. “With the creation of the Kasparov Chess Foundation Europe it is my ambition to further realize the dream of bringing chess into classrooms far and wide so that everyone may enjoy the many benefits the game offers. I’m looking forward to setting up a close collaboration with European institutions to bring chess into schools in the 27 current member states of the European Union.”

The Kasparov Chess Foundation Europe will be based in the Belgian capital, where a core team has started the preparations for the operational roll-out of the foundation scheduled for mid September 2011. The foundation will live on donations from individuals, businesses and governments. The first 100,000 euros come from Callewaert and five other parties that will be announced the coming weeks.

The project isn’t completely new for Kasparov. In June of 2002, Kasparov Chess Foundation, Inc. was founded in the United States. For the last nine years he has been successfully promoting chess at authorities. 3,500 schools in all 50 states have already subscribed to Kasparov’s Teaching Chess Step by Step.

Schools and chess teachers that are interested in the activities of the foundation can go to the official website and sign up to receive news updates as the activities of the foundation get under way.

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