Malta Football Association
NEWS:
Puttinu Cares Marathon
May 11, 2015
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Photos: Joe Borg
Photos: Joe Borg

  • Photos: Joe Borg

 

The Malta Football Association is in the forefront in campaigning for social solidarity. Its initiatives to combat racism, promote fair play and protect the environment goes a long way towards strengthening not only the integrity of the game but also that of society. The public is very much aware of this bond between football and caring about society especially where the principles of inclusiveness are concerned.


 

The activities related to Puttinu Cares yesterday underlined this commitment. This year’s Puttinu Cares opening was held on the 8th May at 10am at the Marsa Sports Ground. 

 

The MFA Social Responsibility Department organised the opening game together with the Agency for the Welfare of Asylum Seekers – AWAS which was used to promote inclusion by involving asylum seekers and National team players. The protagonists for this year’s opening for the Puttinu Cares Football Marathon, were three male national team players, four women’s national team players, four U 19’s national team girls and 12 asylum seekers. They were mixed in two teams, each wearing the MFA Football For Life kit provided to all the players by the sponsor, Teamsport. This match aimed at promoting higher degrees of inclusiveness where colour, race and religion should never be obstacles to our human bondage. 

 

For all the players this was a unique experience which gave them the opportunity to enjoy football and also feel that they were an integral part of the Maltese society. Moreover, wearing the Maltese badge they were playing the role of ambassadors therefore this experience helped to continue develop a positive reputation with the rest of the citizens and asylum seekers themselves.

 

The President of Malta, Mary Louise Coleiro Preca kicked off the 60-hour football marathon. There was an atmosphere of enjoyment throughout as the players got used to each other on the pitch. The MFA presented Puttinu with signed national team vests of our Male national team and a football signed by the women’s national team players.   

 

The 60-hour Football Marathon in aid of Puttinu Cares will this year mark its 11th anniversary. Spanning 3 days, between the 8th and the 10th May, this marathon will see more than 800 teams challenging one another in football matches at the Marsa Sports Ground.

 

The Puttinu Cares Marathon organisers expressed their gratitudeto the Malta Football Association for their co-collaboration in sending the national team players and in the organisation of the Marathon opening game. It was a nice experience for all players, staff and all people present.

 

The Asylum seekers have surely enjoyed this experience as they shared a day with some of our local sports’ heroes. Three of the Asylum seekers shared their thoughts about their participation in this Puttinu Cares event and the happiness of helping others.

 

Steven Tunks aged 19 from Gambia was happy to have dedicated some of his time to others in help. ‘’Thank you, we enjoyed it very much! It is always a pleasure being in a good company while helping those in need. We are very satisfied and very thankful to the organisers who make this event possible.’’

 

Coming from Chad, aged 28, Issa Ibrahim was delighted for having shared his passion for football with girls. ‘’It was a very well-organised event apart from its sole aim. I am very delighted for having played football with girls for the first time. It is a pleasure thing watching them being active, and everyone was very kind. Moreover, I am honoured for having met the President of Malta’’.

 

21 year old Abdulahi Hirsi Ahmed from Somalia enjoyed his meeting with the national players. ‘’It was very nice meeting some of the national team players. Moreover, it was also nice playing football while helping others, that makes me very happy and satisfied’’.

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