By Rawle Welch
Now into its fourth year, the Digicel Nationwide Schools Football Tournament has been getting rave reviews by many influential members of the Hinterland communities.
According to many, the competition has created quite a buzz among the residents both young and old as evidenced by the large turnout at all the games in the various regions which has forced the Organisers to schedule more matches in those areas unlike the three previous years.
Kaieteur Sport was afforded the opportunity to visit some of those communities and engage persons such as Toshaos to solicit their views on the impact the tournament is having within their communities and among the residents.
Toshao Floyd Edwards of Orealla in his remarks welcomed the move by the Company to stage two rounds of matches in the community and expressed his appreciation on behalf of the residents to Digicel and its Management and Staff.
Edwards said they were holding internal Meetings to devise plans to get the youths in meaningful activities and one of the initiatives that they’ve come up with was to get more sports based activities organised within the community.
“What we’ve found is that a lot of the youths because of the absence of sports programmes have no way to expend their energies and they are getting involved in illicit drug use, teenage pregnancy and criminal activities so we’ve formed a Committee to formulate plans for them to be more meaningfully engaged in programmes that will help their personal development as well as that of the community,” Edwards told this newspaper.
He applauded Digicel for coming into the community and offering them an opportunity to get involved in sports.
Toshao Richard Cornelius of Moruca was also in high praise of the work Digicel has been doing in bringing football to communities at a time when they are struggling for meaningful sporting activities.
Cornelius said the tournament will help to improve the level of the game in the communities, adding that it is also serving to expose more of the talent that reside within the various communities, while the players are gaining experience all the time.
“The tournament is serving as good exposure for the young players and even those to come and all this is happening through the goodwill of Digicel,” Cornelius stated.
He added that through Sport the society can become better and posited that it is another way to mould the youths to maintain good social order through their involvement is sports.
“I’m seeing a bright future for the players in this Region and by extension an even brighter future for the country at large,” he said.
The tournament which lasts just over one month is now in its latter stages with semi-finals action slated to commence tomorrow in Georgetown and Berbice.
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