VISITING refugee children from Marawi City and Muslim orphans of war from the Dar Amanah Children’s Home in Silang, Cavite, were treated to a “fun day” by Football for Humanity (FFH) Foundation and VXI Philippines at the Sparta Football complex in Mandaluyong City on April 26.
FFH founder and overall organizer of the event Chris Thomas said, “Our football fun day [was] quite unique: We had top-flight Belgian Coach Nico D’Haenen and his boys [who led] a kinesthetic work-out, as well as Asian Football Confederation-licensed Filipino coaches from San Carlos who conducted freestyle demos, drills and small-sided games [with] grown-ups.” Thomas added, “These kids had been through a lot—psychologically and physically—and we believe football, which is a new experience for some of them, will awaken their sense of fun, teamwork, excitement and love for action. Bottom line, it is a child’s right to play and we’re bringing back this joy, which is really necessary to erase the trauma of the past year.”
For his part, Ambassador of the United Kingdom to the Philippines Daniel Pruce expressed his appreciation of being part of the activity as he gave the children a short inspirational message and assured them of the British Embassy’s support in similar initiatives for Marawi City. The British Embassy has been supporting FFH initiatives since 2016.