Thursday 18 April 2019, 14:20

Sustainable infrastructures championed at Suriname FIFA Forward workshop

  • A FIFA Forward infrastructure workshop was held in Suriname from 10 to 11 April 2019

  • 24 member associations (MAs) attended

  • By the end of 2019, over 120 MAs will have attended similar workshops.

Following the success of the first FIFA Forward infrastructure workshops in 2018, 24 Member Associations (MAs) from the Americas were invited to attend a workshop in Suriname. This took place as FIFA, through the Forward programme, pursues its intention of supporting member associations worldwide to develop sustainable and innovative football infrastructures.

The main aim of these workshops is to enable football administrators across the globe to start a strategic reflection with experts in the fields of engineering, architecture and project management, aiming at developing sports facilities. The participating MAs were able to obtain some essential information on the need to build sustainable and accessible infrastructures that meet international standards, to help lead their infrastructure projects professionally and efficiently.

“The workshop has been enlightening, said Oliver Smith, General Secretary of the Turks & Caicos Islands Football Association (TCIFA). “The critical elements of what is needed before appointing an architect have been highlighted today, such as proper planning and laying out of objectives.”

From natural and football turf pitches, which are essential for the training of new generations of players, through to seat installation, stadium building and upgrade of facilities and their maintenance, several insightful modules were presented to the participants. Best practices from the region’s MAs were also shared with the attendees through videos and case studies.

Suriname FIFA Forward workshop

“What caught my attention is all the work that is needed to maintain a natural grass pitch,” said Camara David, General Secretary of the Trinidad and Tobago Football Association (TTFA). “In addition, the knowledge-sharing among member associations at this workshop has been very useful.”

As part of the workshop, the MAs visited the various infrastructure projects that the SVB have implemented under Forward programme including upgrade of dormitories, seating and a digital scoreboard. At the André Kamperveen Stadium, floodlights have also been installed thanks to the programme’s backing.

Thanks to the support of FIFA Forward and the region’s member associations, the hope is that all football players and enthusiasts across the Americas will have access to the best infrastructures, allowing them to shine and realise their full potential.

As Dalton Wint, General Secretary of the Jamaica Football Federation (JFF), said: “This workshop has been much needed and I will take home what I have learned here to enhance the growth of our federation. With the support of the FIFA Forward Programme, we recently completed a dormitory and a football turf pitch. Our next aim is to upgrade our headquarters and resurface a natural grass pitch.”

Four further regional infrastructure workshops under the Forward programme will be held later this year in Malawi, Bhutan, Fiji and Burundi. By the end of this year, over 120 MAs will have attended the workshops.