As a result of the fantastic grounds created through the spaces for sports initiative, and recognizing the need for social and football development in South Africa, the FFSA was founded. A non profit organisation, which aims not only to promote the game but to uplift the people of this beautiful and diverse country. The FFSA was established in January 2008 by Sir Dave Richards, Chairman of the English Premier League. It is funded by the Premier League and directs funds into grassroots sports and youth development in South Africa.
The strategy is to identify projects, find suitable partners from within the local communities and provide them with access to finance and other crucial resources, thereby ensuring that such projects produce the desired results and are sustainable into the future - to leave a legacy after the 2010 World Cup.
The Foundation is opening doors for many young people in disadvantaged communities in SA; distant dreams of success in life can now become a reality.
The vision of the Gansbaai Communal Sports programme is to give young people who are deprived of sporting facilities the opportunity to play sport, learn about the environment and integrate, as team-mates, with other communities on the sports fields.
The Football Foundation’s sports development programme comprises training four days per week, with games, tournaments and coaching clinics taking place on weekends. Dedicated coaches and volunteers run football, hockey and cricket coaching sessions for the youth in the Gansbaai area, developing boys and girls from the age 6 through to 19. Holiday programmes are a highlight on the FFSA’s calendar, and attract children from the entire community for weeks of fun, games and educational activities. Awareness programmes are launched around important days in South Africa like Youth Day, Women’s Day, World Aids Day etc. The children learn about significant events in history as well as social and environmental issues pertinent today.
A crucial part of this development plan is the Under 19 volunteer group which has the potential to form the backbone of such programmes, and effectively place the future sustainability back in the hands of the community. Looking to the future, the Foundation aims to identify a suitable University to partner with the Gansbaai project in order to enhance the professionalism and sustainability of the project.
We hope to use this as a basis to extend our contribution to sport and social development in other parts of South Africa.
The sports programme is supported by the Overstrand Municipality, Grootbos Foundation, Yuvraj Singh Foundation, Alster Hockey Club, Marcos Senna Fundación, Inspirational Places , Gebeco and various other organisations and individuals.
As the FFSA is a charity and all funds are directed to grassroots development, the programmes depend greatly on volunteers - especially skilled volunteers who have some sporting background or experience. The programme is ideal for foreign students or young professionals who want to take a gap year - it offers an opportunity for travel to South Africa and a chance for giving something back to the community. As such, the Football Foundation volunteer programme in Gansbaai is tailored to each individual’s needs. One can focus on office and administration work, financial planning, reporting, marketing and fundraising; or give hands-on coaching or plan and implement educational programmes. Volunteers would have some weekends free, as well as enough time to travel.
Volunteers usually are not in possession of a car. They can make use of the Grootbos staff bus that travels at various times of the day between Stanford, Grootbos and Gansbaai - this is free of charge. Any travel to Cape Town or further afield can be arranged through a private taxi service (expensive) or through the shark dive operators that travel between Cape Town and Stanford daily. A trip to Cape Town costs approximately R140 (€12).
The Foundation can generally take volunteers on a shark dive, whale boat trip, horse riding or other outdoor activities. As Gansbaai is a seaside town, the beach provides for entertainment. An avid sports fan can join the local Football League, Cricket, Tennis, Netball or Rugby club.
Football Foundation of South Africa
PO Box 148
Tel: +27 (0)28 384 8070
Cell: +27 (0)82 920 7448
Fax: +27 (0)28 384 8100