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Haiti - Soccer : The FLADH women's team won the 2nd National Youth Tournament
21/04/2012 12:18:24

Haiti - Soccer : The FLADH women's team won the 2nd National Youth Tournament
GOALS (Global Outreach and Love of Soccer) congratulates the winners of its 2nd annual national youth soccer tournament, Vin Jwe! (Come and Play). Fondation L'Athletique D'Haiti’s boys’ and girls’ teams, from Cité Soleil, edged out the competition to take home the championship cup. CNN Hero Patrice Millet’s FONDAPS boys team took home the second place trophy and Citadelle Football Club placed second in the girls division. Nearly 250 players ages 13 -18 from around Haiti demonstrated their skills on the field during the course of the two day tournament, held April 14th and 15th in Port-au-Prince, Haiti.

Organizational partners came together to encourage and empower the young players to take charge of their personal health. Global DIRT was on hand to provide first aid care and a team from BoulderCares provided health check-ups and individualized health counseling. Along with a personal care kit including a variety of donated first aid supplies and hand sanitizer, each team received information about protecting themselves against cholera and other health risks, while a DJ at the event reinforced health and hygiene messages. An estimated 1600 people filled the sidelines to support their favorite team. Along with learning how to take charge of their health, the young players were treated to an inspiring exhibition match played by Haiti’s national amputee team.

GOALS director and tournament organizer Kona Shen said, "I’m proud of the sportsmanship and spirit displayed by all of the teams at the tournament, but I’m particularly proud of the FLADH girls team for their determination and teamwork on the field. Through their love of soccer, these girls have become confident, healthy,determined young women. After celebrating, they’ll go home tonight believing that anything is possible. As this year’s champion, the FLADH girls are challenging traditional assumptions about gender roles in developing nations."

GOALS is a sport-for-development organization which harnesses this intense love of soccer in Haiti to engage youth in community work that improves their quality of life, their health, the environment, and local leadership. According to UNICEF, "Sport can be an effective tool to help achieve goals in health, education, gender equality, HIV and AIDS, child protection and child development."

By convening aid agencies with hundreds of young soccer players from around Haiti to promote positive and healthy youth development, GOALS 2nd annual tournament proved that soccer is much more than just a game.

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