Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Cambodia Hosted ISF 2010 U16-Barclays Football Tournament

BY BUTH REAKSMEY KONGKEA

A total of 18 under 16-year old Girls Football Teams with over 300 people from 23 Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) in Cambodia have attended the “ISF U16-Barclays Girls Football Tournament” on March 13th at the old stadium in Phnom Penh in aiming to promote the women’s football playing in the Kingdom of Cambodia.

The under16 year-old Girls Football Competition was organized by the Indochina Starfish Foundation (ISF) in partnership with Football Federation of Cambodia (FFC), and funded by the Barclays Capital which is the investment banking division of Barclays Bank PLC, based in London, United Kingdom.

Samuel Schweingruber, Director of Women’s Football of Football Federation of Cambodia, and Director of the SALT Academy Battambang province, and also Football Coordinator of the Indochina Starfish Foundation, said that it marked the second time FFC and ISF organized this Tournament in Phnom Penh, in aiming to promote the development of football industry as well as women’s football in Cambodia.

“The main purpose of the football competition is to bring the girls from different places of Cambodia to meet each other and playing football together, in order that they can be happy and know each other. It is also to improve their health as well as to promote the women’s football in Cambodia in future,” he told The Southeast Asia Weekly.

He pointed out that on 20th March ISF will also host the third Price Waterhouse Coopers/ ISF Boys Football Tournament 2010 in Phnom Penh. He said participating NGO’s include Cambodia Children’s Fund, Pour un Sourire D’Enfant, HAGAR, Sunrise Children’s Village Kandal, SOS Children’s Villages in Phnom Penh, Siem Reap and Battambang, and ASPECA who are serving Cambodia’s poorest children in Cambodia.

He added that both events will provide fun days out for the footballers and supporters and demonstrate Indochina Starfish Foundation’s commitment to the development of youth football in Cambodia.

Relating to ISF activities, he said that ISF is an international charity assisting some of the poorest children in Cambodia through education and sport. ISF has set up schools in Boeng Salang and Stung Meanchey and Phnom Penh, working with children who support themselves and their families collecting rubbish around the city.

Schweingruber said that ISF helps the children with education and food support parcels and assist the children in entering or re-entering the state education system in Cambodia. He added that in cooperation with 23 other Cambodian and international non-governmental organizations and the Football Federation of Cambodia and SALT Academy Battambang, ISF has developed a football coaching program to give the children the social and physical benefits of participating in organized sports.

He added that so far, ISF has sponsored approximately 2,500 Cambodian disadvantaged or orphaned children training twice a week with qualified coaches and participating in regular leagues held from October to April every year.

Kavin Burke, Managing Director of Barclays Capital, said that Barclays capital was happy to sponsor the “ISF under 16 year-old girls-Barclays Girls Football Tournament” in Cambodia. This event was piloted in 2009 and due to the phenomenal success, Barclays Capital have undertaken to support the event for the next three years.

“Barclays Capital is happy to financially support under 16 year-old girls football teams in Cambodia and this is just the beginning of our Barclays capital’s sponsorship for the disadvantaged children’s football teams,” he told The Southeast Asia Weekly.

To promote the development of football industry as well as to promote the disadvantaged children to enjoy their childhood or playing the football in Cambodia, Barclays capital will continue to sponsor U16 Boys and Girls Football competitions in the future, he said.

Seng Mom, 15, a football player from SOS Children’s Village Battambang, said that she was happy to attend the “ISF-Barclays under 16 year-old Girls Football Tournament 2010” in Phnom Penh.

“It is my first time to attend the football competition in Phnom Penh and I really enjoyed it, and I hope that although I will not win this year’s competition I will have a chance to participate it in the future,” she told The Southeast Asia Weekly. ///




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