The ambitious pilot project, which was launched in December, last year by the Tanzania Football Federation (TFF) in collaboration with the World football governing body, FIFA, seeks to introduce the sport to young boys and girls and encourage them to take up the game.
According to a statement released on Thursday by TFF Spokesperson, Boniface Wambura, the next festival will be held at Mtoni Kijichi Primary School in Temeke district next Friday from 9am to 12 pm, followed by another on February 10 at Kinyerezi Primary School in Ilala district. “These festivals will be held weekly in various Dar es Salaam schools until August 24 and would bring together children aged between 6 and 12,” said Wambura.
“The festivals are a continuation of a big Grassroots festival held on December 17, last year at the National Stadium in Dar es Salaam, which brought together 1,200 children,” he added. The programme, which ran from December 14 to 17 in the city, consisted of a football development seminar conducted by FIFA instructors, youth training and a football festival.
This Grassroots programme mainly supports FIFA's member associations in setting priorities for their grassroots development, as well as helping train local instructors and coaches to become grassroots specialists. FIFA also provides each association with football and educational material. The FIFA Grassroots programme also places at its core, an emphasis on the notion of both education and fun for the children.
It also promotes mass participation and inclusivity; everyone has the right to play regardless of gender, age, skills, race, social origin and religion. “The goal is to triple the amount of children involved in the game by spreading the word to every school in the country and by bringing girls as well as boys into the fold,” reads FIFA statement.