MFA, Ministry for Education sign MOU targeting more physical activity in schools

The Malta Football Association and the Ministry for Education today signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the principal aim of encouraging more children to play football while engaging in physical activity on a regular basis.

In line with the Malta FA strategy, the agreement represents another step in the fulfilment of Association’s mission to continue growing and improving the game of football and the people involved in it at all levels, while fostering a positive social change to embrace a better sporting culture.

Malta FA President Bjorn Vassallo stressed that the school environment is key in providing the first taste of physical activity, sport and football.  “It is crucially important that the football association and the education authorities work together to offer opportunities to thousands of children, using football as a tool for education while promoting inclusion and diversity,” Vassallo said.

Ensuring that as many children as possible are given the opportunity to practise football in schools is a mutually beneficial objective that enhances their wellbeing. Through the Football in Schools programme, to be introduced by the next academic year, children will be given a positive and enjoyable experience, possibly leading to lifelong involvement in sport. With the assistance of UEFA, this initiative will also see the introduction of a grassroots programmes in schools.

The framework provides for a number of initiatives that include after-school sessions and inclusivity projects under the umbrella of the newly-constituted “Fondazzjoni Inħobb il-Futbol”. Both the Malta FA and the Ministry for Edcuation have reaffirmed their collaboration in the context of the National Sports School to ensure the best possible synergy between academic and sport education.

Ensuring that football is an enjoyable experience for children is an integral part of the Malta FA strategy and the Football in Schools project will surely create new opportunities to instil a sporting culture this country needs. The development of a sporting culture is one of the key targets of this project, and the mutual collaboration between both entities will seek to address the obesity problem, especially among children, and increase the level of sports participation.

The MoU was signed by Dr Frank Fabri, Permanent Secretary within the Ministry for Education, and Bjorn Vassallo and Dr Angelo Chetcuti, Malta FA President and General Secretary respectively. The Malta FA would like to thank to Minister for Education Dr Justyne Caruana for her support as well as Parliamentary Secretary for Sport, Youth and Voluntary Organisations Dr Clifton Grima and SportMalta.