President of the Grenada Football Association (GFA), Cheney Joseph, has written to the world governing body seeking assistance for smaller associations in these unprecedented times.
In a letter written to Director of Member Association, Véron Mosengo-Omba, Joseph called on FIFA to reach out to small associations such as the GFA to provide technical and professional support as well as mentorship during the Covid-19 pandemic.
The GFA President said, “This support will ensure the survival of smaller association members whom are dealing with significant challenges at present.”
Economists have analysed the impact of Covid-19 on the region including rising unemployment and negative economic growth. The once thriving tourism and construction sectors have also been severely impacted. This is especially significant since most players in Grenada work in these sectors and are facing uncertain futures. No doubt their focus currently is their survival rather than the sport. Joseph says amidst this negative outlook, the GFA continues the daunting task of building capacity at the club level and has identified that its membership requires support in reorganising their clubs.
“Without a strong club structure, our efforts at developing football in Grenada will remain insurmountable. It is for this reason that we seek the support of FIFA and CONCACAF in designing programmes for virtual workshops on club development. This has become most noticeable during the current pandemic as many of our members have not been able to adequately meet the needs of their members whose livelihoods have been impacted by the onset of the coronavirus” said the GFA President.
Joseph also took the opportunity to remind the world governing body of a suggestion made by the Suriname Football Association who has repeatedly called for a Disaster Recovery Fund. The call was made based on the experiences of many Caribbean member associations being impacted by recent hurricanes. Joseph said, “This call for such funds to be established remains relevant and the Grenada Football Association has started developing a framework for a locally instituted programme to mitigate against future disasters to assist its members.”
Finally, the president updated FIFA on the GFA’s activities during the pandemic including discussions held with members, coaches, players, match officials as well as some of the standing committees and the executive committee. All are engaged in planning under the collective philosophy of preparing to work with this new normal; living with Covid-19.
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