Kalinga Institute of Social Sciences (KISS), Bhubaneswar, in an initiative never before, has launched the world’s first-ever FIFA Football for School Programme at KISS. Naveen Patnaik, Chief Minister of Odisha virtually launched the Programme on 27th October 2021.
Football for Schools (F4S) is an ambitious world-wide programme run by FIFA, which aims to contribute to the education, development and empowerment of around 700 million children.
Inaugurating the programme, an outcome of partnership between FIFA and KISS, Shri Patnaik said, “Investment in sports is investment in youth and future.” Shri Patnaik, who has an insuperable record in promoting sports in Odisha and nationwide, congratulated KIIT and KISS for sustainably creating a conducive ecosystem in channelising passion for sports for the last two decades.
Dr Achyuta Samanta, Founder, KIIT & KISS had been in touch with the FIFA President for the last one and half years for the FIFA Football for Schools Programme, which has been initiated in KISS for the first time in the world.
The launch ceremony was virtually graced by Dr Nik Gugger, Hon’ble MP, Switzerland and Gianni Infantino, President, FIFA, while Samanta; Kushal Das, General Secretary – AIFF; Youri Djorkaeff, CEO – FIFA Foundation and other dignitaries were in attendance in person.
Commending Samanta’s contributions to sports, Dr Nik Gugger said, “This first-ever initiative of the Football for Schools programme by FIFA in the world is an outcome of Dr Samanta’s relentless contribution in the field of sports.”
Congratulating the Chief Minister of Odisha for his revolutionary initiatives in promotion of sports, Gianni Infantino stated, “We are delighted to see Football for Schools launching in India today, one of the first countries in the world where it has been introduced.” Under the guidance of Dr Samanta, KIIT & KISS have been creating sports infrastructure and handholding sportspersons since 2005.
“Under the visionary leadership of Shri Naveen Patnaik, Odisha has become a sports hub and Bhubaneswar a sports capital. He has not forgotten to nurture sports at grassroots,” Dr Samanta said. He promised all support from KIIT & KISS for implementation of the programme.
In the run-up, a three-day ‘Capacity Building Workshop – Train the Trainer’ was conducted by FIFA at KISS from 25th October in which 100 Physical Education teachers from Odisha and over 100 football players from KIIT & KISS participated.