By Jerome Lagunzad
Exactly three hundred underprivileged children, two of them coming from previously war-torn Marawi City, learned the basics of football in the best way possible from top Real Madrid FC coaches in the YKK Asia Group Kids Football Clinic at the McKinley Hill Stadium in Taguig City over the weekend.
Mohammed Faried Anganto and Alintor Bangote made the most of the rare opportunity and joined homeless children, who live and sleep in Luneta Park and Caloocan Monumento and cared for by Child Hope Asia Philippines, to have their own experience playing arguably the most famous sports in the world last Sunday.
“Football was one way for the kids to cope and transcend the experience of the past,” said coach Espiridion Paran who brought Anganto and Bangote under the auspices of Gawad Kalinga.
“It was special for them to experience the YKK Football Clinic conducted by Real Madrid coaches because they learned new skills and trained with professional football gear. They’re used to playing with makeshift equipment, using tennis balls and playing barefoot.”
During the productive two-day event, children from Gawad Kalinga communities also participated in clinics last Saturday before some of the children from lakeshore communities in Batangas had their own the following morning.
It was the second straight time that YKK Asia Holdings Pte Ltd and YKK Philippines have brought Real Madrid Foundation coaches to the country and Agustin Villarama, the company’s AVP for Marketing, is thrilled with their latest endeavor.
Supervising the clinics were Real Madrid Foundation’s Pablo Gomez Revenga, Santiago Sanchez Martin and Hector Vicente, all assisted by 30 local coaches who shared and demonstrated some fine techniques throughout the sessions.