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Just Play phase two kicks off in the Kingdom

This Follows the successful pilot of the Australian Government funded grassroots programme, last year aimed to develop football at a younger level in the kingdom and to incorporate “Just Play” program in primary school curricular.
The program offers children the right to play sport (football) anywhere, at anytime, on any safe surface, and is specifically designed for children between the age of 6-12 years through the improvement and provision of sport kits and resources to primary schools and communities in the country.
Just Play phase two includes Kolonga, Navutoka, Talafo’ou, Nukuleka, Lapaha, Mu’a, Fu’amotu, Kai’avale, Matahau, Te’ekiu, Fatai, Kolovai government primary schools and Marist Ma’ufanga, ‘Ahau, Kolofo’ou, Navutoka, Veitongo, Folaha, Longoteme communities.
A major component of this program is focused on increasing general awareness of the game and encourages healthy lifestyle and eating habits and provides new and increased physical activity opportunities for primary school aged children with “Just Play as the catalyst.
TFA’s Youth Football Development officer, Lui Muavesi, is grateful that Tonga was fortunate enough to have piloted the programme in 2009 with 10 primary schools and one community.
“We have adapted our own approach which has resulted in more than 10 communities in active participation” Muavesi said.
“We are taking Just Play beyond the classrooms and the secret of the trade is to ensure children enjoy themselves in order to achieve active and healthier children with acquired social values and community skills” Muavesi revealed.
The program introduces festivals and competitions at local and national level as well as awards. The second group of trainers will begin their two days training on Thursday 29 July and a Just Play festival is scheduled on Saturday 31 July.
The second phase will be rolled out in six weeks and participating schools will receive “Just Play” kits which include balls, markers, bibs, cones, whistles, pumps and ball bags.

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