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FFSA Holiday Programme Celebrates Marine Week

As is customary whenever school is not in session, the Football Foundation of South Africa facilitated a four-day Holiday Programme filled with fun, games and learning. Focusing specifically on marine life, water safety and recycling, last week’s programme combined various sporting activates with informational sessions on the ocean environment, led by field and marine guide, Lindy Warren. Visiting Lindy in small groups, the children learned all about the marine life, the “Big Five” and the importance of marine preservation, so that the beautiful animals found in the ocean do not become extinct. They also learned about the different natural objects found on the beach, like sea shells, sea weed and how some of the pebbles found on the beach are actually formed from glass. Lindy’s lessons included additional education about being water wise how to use the items in their beach bag to rescue someone who is in danger. Finally, she taught them the emergency number to call (10177) in case of an emergency in a fun little action packed demonstration that made it easier for the children to learn and remember, which had them chanting, “1-0-1-7-7”, as they skipped off the field!

Throughout the week, while one group spent time with Lindy all the other groups participated in tons of entertaining games, races and competitions, including hockey, relays, human tic-tac-toe, soccer drills and penalty shots, mini cricket and netball. The children also played lots of classic group games such as tug-of-war, potato-sack races and wheelbarrow races. We were also delighted to have a visit from the Grootbos Foundation’s Green Team, which joined us for the day on Tuesday and assisted with the coaching and keeping the children entertained while they waited for lunch to arrive.

On the last day of the Holiday Programme, the children, volunteers and coaches spent the morning cleaning up a local beach behind Blompark close to Romansbaai. Despite an overcast day, the children were ready and excited to take a walk with all the coaches and volunteers and help clean the beach. Participants collected over 10 bags of trash, which they then meticulously separated so that everything could be either disposed of or recycled properly. While collecting, they were also instructed on safe behavior when around any broken glass, syringes and hygienic products.

Each day of the programme averaged well over 100 children from Blompark and Masakhane, with 170 kids in attendacne on Wednesday alone! The significant and consistent turn out from the children indicates that this Holiday Programme was a roaring success and fun was had by all while school was out of session!

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