The Inħobb il-Futbol Foundation, under the helm of the Malta FA, has launched Fun Fit Football during one of the sessions held at the Ħal Lija/Ħal Balzan/Iklin school, earlier on today. The launch was attended amongst others by the Minister for Education and Sport Dr Clifton Grima together with the Malta FA President Bjorn Vassallo, and other members of the Inħobb il-Futbol Foundation board.
‘Through the Inħobb il-Futbol Foundation the Association is creating opportunities for individual and collective development demonstrating unwavering committment to grassroots football’ said Malta FA President Bjorn Vassallo.
He reiterated that ‘one of the Foundation’s primary aims is to increase participation growth and to facilitate the pathway from the school grounds to the football nurseries ensuring not only regular physical activity but also promoting football as a social and educational tool.’
Photos: Copyright Mark Zammit Cordina
Fun Fit Football is spread all over the government primary schools in Malta and Gozo and open for both boys and girls. Details about the programme were given by the Head of the Grassroots Development unit Ivan Woods, who explained that it is estimated that at the end of this scholastic year approximately 20,000 kids would have participated in the Fun Fit Football programme.
Schools are ideal partners to give all children, irrispective of ability, gender, ethnicity or religion, the opportunity to play football in a safe environment. According to recent data about 80% of children physical education sessions in school are the only opportunities to engage in physical activity so schools are a crucial stakeholder being the place where children will kick their first football.
It is important that the first experience of football is a positive one and thus experienced coaches were specifically chosen to help create a lifelong habit of doing sport or physical activity and leverage the positive impact football can have on the lives of young people.
The Malta FA has worked closely with the Physical Education Department of the Education Division to develop an informative booklet which can be used by the respective primary school teachers who can follow up on the sessions themselves. Furthermore this collaboration has fostered a strong network of engaged grassroots experts.
The Fun Fit Football programme is financed by UEFA, with the help of the Malta Government.