Who says soccer is only for the rich?
In Quezon City, children in conflict with the law were provided with free basic soccer training, not only for them to enjoy the sport, but, also to help open up opportunities to ensure their successful integration to society as productive members of the community.
Program beneficiaries include children from poor communities in Barangays Batasan Hills, Commonwealth, Bahay-Toro, Balingasa, Holy Spirit, Matandang Balara, UP Campus and Tatalon.
The program forms part of the sports development initiative of Vice Mayor Joy Belmonte, dubbed “Champs for Joy,” which the Vice Mayor launched last month in the hope of developing potential athletes at the grassroots level to represent QC in local and international sports competitions. The training sessions started last March 26.
Vice Mayor Belmonte has partnered with Team Philippines for the Homeless World Cup in bringing the program to QC’s disadvantaged children.
Players of Team Philippines will be sharing their football skills for free for at least three months to program beneficiaries.
Aside from soccer, the “Champs for Joy” sports program also offers free training in other sports discipline such as basketball, baseball, arnis, sepak takraw, badminton, volleyball, boxing, table tennis, lawn tennis, chess, taekwando and track and field.
Children from public elementary schools and the barangays as young as seven years old are expected to benefit from the training programs, most of which, will be conducted at the Amoranto Sports Complex along Roces Avenue.
There will be separate training programs to be conducted for coaches and referees.
The Vice Mayor reiterated the need for the government to make sure that every child be given the opportunity to attain their full sports potential as she underscored the importance of a healthy citizenry in promoting the city’s growth and development. -30- Precy/ Ramir/ Maureen Quinones, PAISO