The Guyana Football Federation Inc. (GFF) is planning to invest in football infrastructure in the Rupununi to support the growth of the game in hinterland communities, GFF President Wayne Forde told the Annual General Meeting of the Rupununi Football Federation (RFA).
This was revealed last Saturday during a two-day visit to the region by Forde and GFF First Vice President ret. Brigadier Bruce Lovell who kicked off the GFF’s annual Member Outreach Programme to the region aimed at strengthening relationships and listening to the concerns of the local football community.
The GFF also announced it would provide three hundred thousand (GYD $300,000) in funding for prize money to help kick off the RFA’s next league competition, which is expected to start in March.
Forde said the GFF was looking into ways to upgrade existing playing facilities in Lethem with new turf, stands and lights, but was also considering a request to build a new ground to better serve a community where football is growing rapidly.
“Let’s think big. The ultimate goal is to have a separate venue that belongs to the GFF and the RFA,” Forde said. “The key reason for these projects is so that the RFA and its members can find a sustainable source of revenue. If you have a facility like that, you can have proper income from games and fans – the opportunities are endless.”
The GFF representatives also inspected local club grounds and met with prominent members of the private sector, including representatives from the Guyana Bank for Trade and Industry (GBTI), to encourage further investment in the sport.
Meanwhile, President of the RFA, Ken Grant, expressed pleasure about the GFF’s Executive Committee’s investment in the hinterland. “We are excited about the GFF’s plans and encourage them to continue to invest in football in the hinterland, and not just in the Rupununi”. “There is a real passion for football among indigenous communities across Guyana, and so much potential talent.”
The GFF has put serving and working alongside its nine Regional Member Associations at the heart of its mission, as part of its commitment to reform and develop football from top to bottom.
“We are very pleased with what has been happening here,” Forde told delegates. “And I hope you have noticed that the GFF Executive Committee has been doing its part.”
The GFF is putting more resources into hinterland communities, with four out of 13 of its new youth Academy Training Centres dedicated to scouting and developing talent in the Rupununi.
“The GFF is very serious about developing talent in the hinterland communities,” Forde said. “I’m pleased to say that we have been making good on our commitments.”
The RFA joined the national governing body in urging all members to abide by football’s governance reforms and regulations in order to play their part in restoring credibility to football worldwide, and to lay solid foundations for the future success of football in Guyana.
“We congratulate the GFF for being so strong on governance, and enforcing regulations,” Grant said. “We will continue to capitalize on every opportunity in the interests of football.