It’s been a little while since my last update, I’ll explain why shortly, but in the meantime we’ve held a scouting tournament for the Street Child World Cup, plans for renovating the new drop-in centre are in, and I’ve err lost some wisdom.
Street Child World Cup
First up, the Street Child World Cup. It’s a great project bringing together possibly 16 countries in the world with street kids. In 2014, just before the World Cup in Rio, these countries will compete with teams of children who used to live and/or work on the streets to raise awareness of the problems street children face. At Nayon ng Kabataan, we held a small tournament with eight teams and it went well. Every month we’ll be holding tournaments for eligible teams and players, the next will be on April 13. As we build the friendships and get to know each other better, players will be selected to train together in a pool, before that selection is whittled down to the eight boys and eight girls selected to represent the Philippines in 2014.
We’re hoping to get down to Cebu, Iloilo, and Davao also. If anyone else is working with street kids and football please do get in contact.
Payatas FC girls won the girls division while Mangga FC (the other girls’ team I coach) were second. They have a lot of potential and even Althea, a nine year old playing in a U16 tournament, scored a hat-trick at one point – all good goals and she’s certainly one to watch for the future. Payatas FC continues to grow and Philip Warren Gertsson, the number six ranked football free-styler in the world, went to the tournament, taught some skills, and came down to Payatas to join in with the training. He was great with the kids and some of the things were surprisingly easy to learn when you picked them up. Thanks to him and everyone else who joined from Skilla in Manila.
Now onto the drop-in centre. We’ve received a great amount of support for this, buying and renovating a new building for the drop-in centre. Here we hold classes each day for kids struggling at school and particularly out of school youth. It’s our centre for assessing the kids’ situations and referring them to children’s homes, supporting their education, or looking for more practical solutions to their individual cycle of poverty.
Alasdair has been a great help in raising funds in the Philippines, and Triple E back in England have too. We have the budget to renovate the building, after we concluded buying it, though there will be some tough decisions first. The first plans we received back from an architect who had kindly looked at the building were over budget and so we’re looking into lots of cost-saving ways – particularly recycling material to use as the fences, and similar avenues of cost-saving.
This is very doable and we remain optimistic of renovating the building for a reasonable price. Our aim is for the centre to be fully operational in May, so we can move from our current centre to this new one, which is only 100 yards away. More updates to follow there.
Loss of Wisdom
As for my loss of wisdom, well I had a wisdom tooth removed almost two weeks ago. Still my tongue is numb on the right side and there’s a fair amount of pain on the jaw. When I went back to the dentist’s to have the stitches removed he said that the nerve could have been damaged and it takes months, sometimes even years, for the nerve to repair itself fully and the proper sensations to return. I hope this doesn’t mean that there will be constant numbness in the tongue, and pain in the jaw, for the next months-year, but we’ll see.
I did a bit of research and when having your wisdom teeth removed and they’re fully developed, it can damage the lingual nerve in the jaw and this is what makes the tongue numb and jaw sore. It’s stopped me training and stopped a few things, but hopefully will begin to recover. As far as I’m aware there’s nothing much I can do except wait for things to heal, but if you know of anyone in a similar situation or had the same thing happen (apparently it’s something like 1 in 50 people 25+ years having their wisdom teeth this happens to) then any advice would be appreciated.
Til then just gotta keep getting on with things. We’ve had a lot to be pleased about and a lot of interest in the charity. TV5 and UNTV came down to film (still waiting on their hard copies of the shows they broadcast it on) while FIFA Futbol Mundial came afterwards and were great. Mundial should broadcast in April sometime so very much looking forward to that. The classes in the centre keep progressing and as we know the kids more the referrals to the appropriate area continue. There’s a lot to be thankful for and so a huge thanks to everyone who’s supported us to this point. We’ve got a lot of great plans for 2013. Let’s hope we can achieve them.
If you’re interested in volunteering or fundraising for the Fairplay for All Foundation (at either the drop-in centre or Payatas FC) please do get in touch. Our charity email address is email@example.com or contact me here.