Digicel/JFF Grassroots Festival

The Jamaican Football Federation (JFF) and Digicel are starting a grassroots football pilot program mandated by FIFA. Today I had the fortune to be at the first festival on the island. We started the morning in a coach educators program.

The purpose was not to teach people how to coach technical skills, but how to get young people interested in the game. There were adults from all over the parish who were really excited about the program, and it gave me an opportunity to introduce myself and explain that my purpose in working with the St. Thomas FA is to build the grassroots program in the parish. Andre Virtue, a former Reggae Boy, is the head of the grassroots program and hopefully I will continue to work with him to get the program up and running.

Andre Virtue, JFF Grassroots Coordinator

After lunch I had the opportunity to meet the president of the JFF. For those of you who know my career goals, you understand how unbelievable it is to now have this man as a resource. He flew from Kingston to Morant Bay by helicopter because he doesn’t like driving on the Jamaican roads—I can’t say I blame him. I got a formal thank you from him in front of the group for wanting to be a part of their grassroots program.

Captain Horace Burrell, JFF President

The afternoon session was with all the likkle pickni. They worked on passing and receiving, heading, shooting and goal keeping, and small sided games. It was HOT, and it was the first day that I have really been in the sun all day since being here. The kids were super cute and they seemed to really enjoy it!

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