Wednesday July 25, 2012
Extend Midnight Football programme to more areas, ministry urges AFC
By DERRICK VINESH
THE Education Ministry wants the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) to extend its Midnight Football youth development programme to more areas, especially where people’s housing projects (PPR) are located.
Its deputy director-general (Planning) Ho Khek Hua said the Midnight Football programme, which was first held in Cheras, Kuala Lumpur in 2010 and later, in Bandar Baru Sentul last year, was successful in instilling positive values among students there.
“We want the AFC to help organise similar programmes in PPR areas that are densely populated to promote greater integration among the communities there through sports,” he said after opening the state-level Inter-Secondary Schools Rukun Negara Club Patriotic Songs Choir Competition 2012 at the Bertam Sports Complex in Kepala Batas, Seberang Prai, recently.
Ho said the ministry received positive feedback about the programme, which also helped to enhance better interaction between the students and their parents, apart from sharpening their football skills.
He added that the ministry was in the midst of identifying suitable PPR areas in the country, where similar programmes could be carried out, especially for the benefit of youths that needed special attention.
The eight-month long programme, which required participants to attend training twice a week, also inculcated character building, time management and emotional valuation among the students.
The programme in Sentul, which ended last month, was participated by 70 boys and girls from SMK Bandar Baru Sentul, SMK La Salle Sentul, SMK Convent Sentul and SMK Methodist Sentul.
It was jointly organised by the AFC, National Unity and Integration Department, Global Peace Festival Malaysia, Education Ministry and the local community.
The inaugural programme was initially held after midnight, but it was later switched to late evenings after the organisers felt that it was not advisable for the youths to train in the wee hours.