In effort to contribute to the further development of football across the country, Papua New Guinea Football Association gifted Wewak Football Association with 24 new balls last week.
Spanish Football Foundation LaLiga donated the equipment to PNGFA to promote football and its value as a tool to improve social inclusion of children, women and vulnerable groups of people.
PNGFA General Secretary Dimirit Mileng delivered the balls to Wewak Soccer Association president Mathew Chapok in person.
“The balls don’t belong to anyone personally,” Mileng said.
“They are for everybody in the local leagues to use to play football.”
Chapok – who is also president of Sepik Football Association, the provincial member association Wewak belongs to – thanked PNGFA for their support, and said that he is looking forward to further development in the province as resources become more accessible.
“We have a total of 16 teams playing in our competition,” he said.
“Football is moving strongly in our province and we are very happy to see some of our players selected into the national team.
“We are very happy with the development of football in Wewak.”
Development in the member association has improved particularly fast over the past year since the launch of the Meri Futbol development programme in 2016.
Girls from five schools were invited to participate in the U-14 and U-16 Meri Futbol Leagues, with FIFA providing football boots, socks, shin pads, uniforms and balls.
The implementation of the programme in Wewak gave the young female athletes an opportunity to participate in physical activity while building a passion and skill for football.
With new equipment raising the standard of football in the association, Wewak is hopeful that they will be providing many more national team players in the near future.