gloveglu is a proud supporter of We Love Football Academy (WLFA) which was set up by Christian Alder in 2016 and registered as a non-profit organisation in South Africa that year.
WLFA offers weekly professional football coaching to 25 to 30 children aged 7 – 14 years from the townships in and around Cape Town. 102 children have taken part in weekly football training sessions.
The children face significant challenges. Parents and children respond positively to safe, structured activities taking the children away from the dangers of the townships.
In order to better understand the needs of the children, focus groups have been carried out with children attending WLFA, parents or guardians of the children, football coaches and trustees of the organization.
To date, personal requests for help through contacts of the founder have provided footballs, kits, healthy snacks, boots, bags, shirts and shorts, bibs. This is not sustainable if the organisation is to grow. WLFA would like to expand its provision of football training to assist more children.
A strategic plan has been developed with that in mind. A partnership with L’avenir wine farm, who wish to develop a sports academy, seems to offer the facilities and foundation requ
- Every vulnerable child in Cape Town can learn hope,
discipline and life skills through a love of football.
- We Love Football Academy improves the life chances of vulnerable children by providing a structured program offering football skills, education and mentorship though trained role models, to inspire children, teach them fair play on and off the football pitch, and allow them to escape the dangers of life on the streets in townships.
The WLFA instils the following eight values in its players and staff:
- Fair play
Key issues identified by children attending the WLFA
- Alcohol, drug and substance abuse
- Crime and violent crime including rape and robbery
- Gangsters and fights/criminals
- Unemployment / little opportunity for sport and social activities
- Housing inadequate so people spend time on the streets and get into trouble
- HIV, TB, other health issues
- Peer pressure to do bad things
- Hope lost, kids lost, lives lost – lack of prospects and discipline
- Lack of good nutrition
- Parenting issues, absent fathers – lack of role models
- No play clothes – families afford/prioritize school uniform
How WLFA helps
- To get children away from crime and danger on streets e.g. pressure to join gangs, take drugs, smoke
- Teaching values, respect, discipline shows in other areas of life and school work
- Welcome, happy and free space where children can play and relax
- Respect and love ‘we feel warm here’
- We respect each other. Children from different postcodes are often caught up in territorial gangs. ‘Football is bigger and has respect’ Children playing football say they have less pressure from / to join gangs. ‘gangsters treat us more gently – respect us’
- Coaches become role models, especially for boys in many families with no visible father figure
- We learn respect for elders and to listen
- Supervised, safe and productive interactions; paren
ts can relax (knowing children are safe, not in the street)
- We are busy ‘no time for bad things’ ,‘football keeps us safe’.