The National, Wednesday September 10th, 2014
HAVING fun is the main objective of the Just Play football programme undertaken by the Papua New Guinea Football Association.
The elementary school students of St John’s Primary School in Port Moresby were all smiles during a recent week-long Just Play workshop with the theme: “Respect Everyone”.
PNGFA technical director, Taku Niebo, took the excited youngsters through the basics of the world game with activities and drills that had the students eager for more.
“The whole idea is to make it a fun experience for them following the four Just Play objectives – health, gender equality, respect for all and safety,” Niebo said.
The students were put into groups according to their house colours (red, blue, green and yellow) and practiced their passing, dribbling and kicking skills. The programme started with a small group of students but soon attracted interest from the others – proving that if an activity is fun and wholesome the children will react positively.
Facilitator Vali Wari, who teaches at Taurama Primary School in the city’s east, said the success of the programme was evident by the interest it garnered and the number of smiles and the laughter produced over the five days. It was the first rollout of the new programme in Port Moresby.
Plans are in place to introduce it to other parts of the country.
Niebo thanked UEFA, the Australian government (through its agencies AusAID and the Australian Sports Commission), Football Federation Australia and UNICEF for making the community-based sports initiative possible.