GFF initiates FIFA Football for Schools programme
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GFF president Wayne Forde (left) and government officials, including Minister of Youth, Culture and Sport, Charles Ramson Jr,  (centre) work through proposals for the FIFA Football for Schools programme.
GFF president Wayne Forde (left) and government officials, including Minister of Youth, Culture and Sport, Charles Ramson Jr, (centre) work through proposals for the FIFA Football for Schools programme.

… meets with government officials to discuss details

THE first step towards ensuring Guyana benefit from the world football governing body’s Football for Schools programme took a giant leap on Wednesday with Guyana Football Federation (GFF) president Wayne Forde meeting with government officials.

The meeting was held to kick off the national approval process necessary to accept an offer from FIFA for Guyana to become the first CARICOM nation to benefit from the programme.

The programme, for which FIFA will provide financial, technical and logistical support to establish sustainable football initiatives and competitions in primary and secondary schools around the world, requires a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the Government of Guyana and GFF, the creation of a national steering committee and an agreed list of participating schools.

GFF president Wayne Forde met with Minister of Culture, Youth and Sport Charles Ramson Jr, Chairman of the National Sports Commission Kashif Muhammad, Director of Sport Steve Ninvalle and Assistant Director of Sport Melissa Dow-Richardson to discuss the details of the MoU and the composition of the steering committee.

According to a GFF release, Forde will appoint the chair of the committee, which will include representatives from GFF, Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sport, National Sports Commission, corporate Guyana and members of the football community.

“We are honoured and deeply proud that Guyana has been selected by FIFA as a role-model member association to become the first CARICOM nation to benefit from the FIFA Football for Schools programme.

FIFA and GFF are eager to move forward as swiftly as possible in partnership with the Government of Guyana, so that this important programme can be delivered for the new school year in September 2022,” Forde said.

The GFF president pointed out that “it is crucial that we are able to meet the strict criteria stipulated by FIFA for its development activities, and this meeting with government has helped us move forward in securing the support and resources required to deliver the programme successfully.

“With expert help from the world governing body of football, and with all eyes in the region on us as the first CARICOM nation to participate, Guyana has a golden opportunity to transform its school sports agenda and to further cement its reputation as a premier destination for football development in the Caribbean,” he said.

The next steps in the process include finalising and signing the MoU, appointing the steering committee and providing FIFA with the list of primary and secondary schools that will benefit.

FIFA Football for Schools, in collaboration with UNESCO, aims to contribute to the education, development and empowerment of around 700 million children. It seeks to make football more accessible to both boys and girls by incorporating football activities into the education system, in partnership with relevant authorities and stakeholders.

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