Mubadala project for schools big success

The ‘beautiful game’ that is football has never been short of popularity around the world and this part of the region. And the impressive numbers are showing up when it comes to grass-root initiatives.

By James Jose

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Published: Wed 18 Apr 2012, 1:25 AM

Last updated: Fri 3 Apr 2015, 2:02 AM

A whopping 8,200 students and 94 physical education instructors across 57 schools in Abu Dhabi completed their first year training as part of the ‘Football in Schools’ programme introduced by the Ministry of Education (MOE) and the UAE Football Association (UAEFA). The first year programme came to an end with the final series of training workshops on Monday.

The exciting project, supported by Mubadala Development Company (Mubadala), the Abu Dhabi-based investment and Development Company, is designed to nurture football talents in schools in the under 12 category and aims to introduce and promote football in all government primary schools in the country within three years.

As part of the programme, 57 schools received the resources required to conduct sessions such as footballs, bibs, cones and mini goals in addition to student diaries and teacher manuals that include information on how to play football, healthy eating tips and fitness advice.

The programme also included the rollout of grassroots football festivals where students who have taken part in the programme and excelled from every Emirate, will be trained by professional coaches.

The three-year long grassroots national project was introduced into schools in September 2011. During the workshop, Bernard Schumm and Abdullah Hassan, who lead youth training and development at the UAE Football Association, conducted theory and practical classes around the basics of grassroots football and the required skills and techniques for teachers.

“We are delighted to see the training sessions have received positive feedback from the instructors. The workshops have progressed into interactive sessions as teachers enquired about required skills and encouragement tactics for children. We all share a common goal and the promotion of grassroots football has always been one of our priorities,” Abdullah Hassan, head of the Technical Development Department, UAEFA, said on Monday.

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