Written by CorpsAfrica/Malawi Volunteer Ms. Assiatu Pongolani
Clearly, for those who follow me here, almost every post in the past few months of blogging has been a song of the Grass Root Soccer (GRS) project. This fun activity has been my favorite from other projects because it does not need a lot of resources to facilitate, besides human energy and time. Also, GRS helped me to integrate with kids in my community so fast when I just got here that it made me not to be so bored but instead interact with them. From another point of view, kids tend to enjoy GRS a lot because it is a lot of fun; soccer and of course a lot of energizers and cheer differentiate it from other training and activities as the kids do not just stay in a room and listen to a GRS coach but rather they are having fun while learning.
GRS project has got eleven practices and also eleven topics/activities. Each activity is connected to one another meaning that it is a pass on information where topics has to recall from the past. Topics on GRS activities are:
- Find the ball
- Risk field
- HIV transmission tree
- HIV limbo
- HIV attacks
- Break away from HIV
- Circumcise and condomize
- Gender stadium
- My supports
- Red card
It also has supplemental topics in case to substitute from the above topics depending on the matter or situation. For example, if a coach is facilitating to a girls group only, one might think of not facilitating circumcise and condomize topic but instead take one topic from the supplemental topics.
GRS rule is that, for a student to graduate from it, one has to attend a minimum of eight topics and I am so excited now to say that I have graduated twenty one students out of twenty nine who managed to attend at least eight topics and four of them attended all the topics (A BIG HAND TO THEM!!!). A lot of lessons were learnt from my past project and since that I have started a new one, I am excited to see that some of the challenges that I faced during the implementation has been already solved even before I started. One of the big challenges was the lack of soccer balls for the project and I asked CorpsAfrica for help with some resources to deal with the challenge.
Other than that, the past six months of working as a CorpsAfrica Volunteer has been my time of not just teaching others but also to personally grow in one way or the other. The skills and knowledge I am getting from this volunteer work will help me to be an expert somewhere when my service is over and for those who follow my blogs and work please continue doing so because I know that you are also learning from my awesome blogs and together we GROW!!!!! Sikomo kwedyinji. (“Thank you very much” in chiyawo)