Feb 08, 2012 Sports
– Programme to also create scholarship opportunities for students/players
Executive Director of the Scotia Bank/Pepsi Schools Football Academy, Colin Baker said that one of his aims of the Programme will be an introduction of international coaches in Guyana to work along with the physical education teachers in schools to help improve football in his homeland.
Baker made specific reference to the players starting at an early age which is from 10, since they will learn the fundamentals of the game and use it as everyday skills in their life.
He revealed that the Scotia Bank/Pepsi Schools Football Academy is for students who are attending schools and are between ages of 10-15 and caters from both genders since sports is important in a student life.
This year Football Academy has a total of 12 schools participating; last year Academy comprised of eight schools. Baker, who is also the President of Guyana Sports Development Foundation, said that a few adjustments has been made to the programme to make it more effective and added that the Academy will involve a coaching course for teachers (which was already conducted) and a referee course for students of the different schools and institutions.
The President noted that the reason for implementing a referees course for the students from the different schools/institutions on the programme is for them (students) to be assistant referees at the upcoming tournament in March.
It must be pointed out that students should take advantage of this course since it will also help them with their educational segment in school; football is a sport which is a part of Caribbean Examination Council (CXC) exams (Physical Education) and with CXC in May-June students will be entering the examinations with an advantage.
Asking Baker about the successes from the Academy, he declared that they had seven players from the programme playing for the Lady Jaguars U-17 team last year and also players qualifying for the Inter-Guiana Games (IGG) which was held in Suriname last year; the IGG male team was coached by Gordon Brathwaite.
He further disclosed that upcoming tournament will aid in recognizing new talent in Guyana and stated that youths are the future and the fruits of the country.
He added that it was necessary to get the youngsters to play the game from the youth stage to be able to identify possible scholarship candidates, “The reason to start this young is to create scholarship opportunities for the students, I am currently working along with some coaches in the United States of America to organise scholarships for the successful players,” he said.
He also disclosed that at the conclusion of the tournament in March an All Star Boys and Girls Team will be named and hopes that the selected teams will be able to participate in tournaments of the Guyana Football Federation (GFF) and the Georgetown Football Association (GFA).
In closing, Baker expressed his gratitude to the sponsors of the Academy, Scotia Bank, Demerara Distilleries and also the stakeholder and members of the organising committee for the programme.
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