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Kids festival on this month

The Solomon Islands Football Federation (SIFF) has set the 20th of September as the kick off date and preparations for the event are well underway.
Each Provincial Football Association (PFA) will be represented by 2 primary schools so a total of 20 schools are expected to turn up for the event.
This will be the second edition of the Our Telekom National Kids Football, Cultural Exchange and Education Festival, referred to as the kids football festival for short. The first edition was held in September 2009 and was also sponsored by Our Telekom.
Our Telekom is continuing its commitment to supporting grassroots football in Solomon Islands by continuing to support the kids football festival event.
Last year a total of 19 schools attended the inaugural kids football festival event. They were accommodated at St. John School in West Honiara.
This year the event is expected to be bigger and SIFF is working to ensure that its objectives under football, cultural exchange and education are well met.
Chairman of the Our Telekom National Kids Football, Cultural Exchange and Education Festival Local Organizing Committee, Phillip Ohoto’ona said that this year is a special year for the kids football festival.
“We have decided to integrate the 2010 kids football festival with the Just Play program so the participating schools will have the opportunity to undergo coaching and receive football equipment to take with them when they go back,” Ohoto’ona said.
“The event is part competition and part development so we are making use of it to help the schools with their football programs.”
In 2009 the kids football festival was done in collaboration with the FIFA grassroots coaching program run by Yvon Avry. All schools that attended the championship then also benefitted from coaching and football equipment that were issued at the end of the event.
The daily program will begin with coaching and then followed by football competition matches in the afternoon. The evenings are reserved for education and awareness programs and also testimonies from national beach soccer and Futsal players.
SIFF is currently liaising with non-governmental organizations to organize awareness talks for the participating teams.
“We will be paying for 300 primary school students to gather in Honiara for the kids football festival and I hope that NGOs can also make use of the event to reach out to the children,” Ohoto’ona said.
One of the expected highlights in 2010 is the cultural night in which the participating schools will perform cultural dances or songs from their region or village.
So far a total of 4 PFAs have indicated that they will send teams for the kids football festival. They are Honiara, Malaita, Western and Guadalcanal.
More confirmations are expected to be received this week.

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