A brief opening ceremony at the Red Cross headquarters, signalled the commencement of an Olympic solidarity youth course on Nevis.
The first of its kind program commenced on Wednesday 21st September and was expected to run over a period of five days.
Mr. Stanley Jacobs, general Secretary of the of SKNFA, ably chaired the proceedings and in his opening remarks noted that the program was geared towards capacity building and training of the trainers.
He stated that his association is committed to the development of sports on Nevis.
He pointed out that last year, the regional female FIFA qualifying matches were played in Nevis and just a week ago, the historic first of a CONCACAF grass roots training program, was held on the island
He indicated that the course was as a result of a partnership between the Olympic committee; FIFA and the SKNFA
“It is a good time to be involved in Football because a lot of things are happening. Currently St.Kitts-Nevis is ranked 77 in the world and number 2 in the Caribbean,” he revealed.
He said that he anticipates more teams from Nevis will participate in the SKNFA league and that Nevis will soon have a vibrant league
Rohan Isles, president of the Nevis Football Association, also addressed the gathering.
He thanked the relevant bodies for making the course possible as it gave the participants an opportunity to develop themselves and noted that the game will only benefit because of that.
He also urged the participants to learn as much as they could and take the course seriously.
SKNFA president, Anthony Johnson thanked the SKNOC for collaborating closely with his association over the years.
He thanked the body for financially assisting in sending St. Kitts- Nevis teams to overseas tournaments.
He noted that Nevis would be able to become more independent and will be able to have its own youth and senior tournaments. He stated that he wants all of the clubs on Nevis to become members of the SKNFA.
He also pointed out that the premier league has quite a number of officials from Nevis.
He admonished the participants to go back to their respective schools and clubs and impart the knowledge that they would have gained.
It was also pointed out that Jamir Claxton is the current manager of the ST. Kitts-Nevis under 20 team and Alex Claxton is a part of the coaching staff for the team.
President of the SKNOC, Alphonso Bridgewater promised that although it was the first time that his association was collaborating on such a course, that it will not be the last time.
He congratulated Mr. Isles and Mr. Johnson on the manner in which they are leading their various organizations
He then gave seven reasons why he is delighted to have the course in Nevis.
He also noted that the participants will have to complete at least 90% of the required hours of the course, before they can be certified.
Facilitator of the course, Mr. Etienne Siliee expressed his pleasure at facilitating the course and indicated that it would involve the relaying of much information and skills training
Etienne Siliee (often misspelled as Etienne Sealey) is a Curaçao professional football manager. In 1996 and from 2005 to 2007 he coached Netherlands Antilles national football team. Currently he is working as a technical director of the Curaçao Football Federation.
He was placed in charge of the Curaçao national football team for their 2014 Caribbean Cup campaign. He is also a coaching license instructor for CONCACAF.
Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Sports, Mr. Keith Glasgow, spoke on behalf of the Hon. Hazel Brandy-Williams. He congratulated all of the partners who helped to make the course possible.
He urged the participants to ‘put their best foot forward.’
‘You have five days and make a commitment to do well each day.’
He then declared the workshop officially open.
Presentations of jerseys were then made to the participants by the Technical director of the SKNFA, Lenny Lake and Jamir Claxton.
Similar presentations were also made to Director of Youth on Nevis, Miss Zahnela Claxton, participants by The Technical director of the SKNFA to Mr. Bridgewater and Mr. Glasgow.
Mr. Stanley Jacobs also delivered the vote of thanks.
The course involved theoretical material and also practical sessions which were conducted at the ET Willet Park.