The Guyana Football Federation (GFF) in collaboration with the Guyana Girls Academy (GGA) have embarked in a partnership that will help to develop women’s football from the grassroots level in Guyana. On Tuesday at the GFF’s secretariat, boardroom, the GGA August camp and academy was officially launched.
The GGA Camp is a four-day football camp geared towards giving young girls a peek into the GGA setup as well as to create more interest in girl’s football. The first camp will be held from today, July 26 to Saturday July 29 in Georgetown at the Transport Sports Club ground on Woolford Avenue and is open to girls’ ages 7 to 11. The camp will allow Guyanese girls to get a taste of the GGA and girls football with an elite coaching staff in a professional environment on and off the field.
Head of the Guyana Girls Academy (GGA), Colin Wilson, who is a women’s coach based in the USA, explained that his organization who partners with the GFF, also collaborates with ABSAA. The Alex Bunbury Sports and Academics Academy (ABSAA) which looks to create a state of the art multi-sports facility in order to develop and empower boys and girls throughout the Caribbean through sport and education. The GGA partners with ABSAA to help develop youth football in a quality environment with the unified goal of raising the level of football in Guyana.
Guyana will be participating in the CONCACAF qualifiers for the Women’s Under-17 World Cup beginning on August 9th and squad depth is one of the challenges of the team. Colin Wilson explained that, “With this camp we’re starting off with the younger girls and we’re hoping to build from there to get as many girls as possible to get as big as player pool for Guyana so they can compete in the highest levels in the future.”
Technical Director of the GFF, Ian Greenwood noted at the launch that women’s football in Guyana is behind world standards about 20 years. The GFF is keen to be associated with the GGA because women’s football development is high on the organization’s agenda. That process began with the appointment of Tricia Munroe as the Women’s Development Officer recently. Greenwood related the importance of the GGA academy, “We know that we need to get more girls into our national teams over the next few years. Predominantly it’s more overseas players based on the quality. We need to develop our local players ourselves from the ages of 5, 6 or 7 and so the (GGA) falls right in line with the GFF’s mandate.” Greenwood further stated that after the Guyana Girls Academy camp is completed, the girls from the event will be involved in various GFF/Scotiabank Academy training centers and grassroots programmes to have continued practice all year round.
Head of the GFF, Wayne Forde, expressed gratitude to all the individuals who have helped women’s football in Guyana and he was positive that those key players would be delighted, as himself, with the opportunity to expose young female ball weavers to the professional training setup. Forde expressed sorrow at the available facilities for the camp but promised by next year, that Colin Wilson and the Guyana Girls Academy will be utilizing a GFF football facility, as the GFF president hinted that works on the FIFA Forward project will begin soon.
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