Laureus Awards legacy in full flight with football in Malaysia
Yayasan Rakyat 1Malaysia (“YR1M”) together with the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation and Real Madrid Foundation (“RMF”) have just launched the second season of the Kejohanan Bolasepak Piala 1Malaysia football tournament aimed at Under-19 youth in Malaysia.
As with last year, the tournament will see participation from teams in all states in Malaysia and will consist of five regional tournaments and the Grand Finals. The regional tournaments will kick off on December 15, 2014 and end onMarch 6, 2015.
With the tagline Bukan Sekadar Piala (“It’s Not Just About the Trophy”), the tournament has two objectives. First, the nation-wide tournament enables school-leavers throughout Malaysia to continue playing competitive football with a view towards advancing to state level. Secondly, it exposes participants to careers, particularly within football and other sports through workshops, seminars and a careers symposium for both coaches and players.
“We believe that at this age, the boys are at a crossroads about their future, with some contemplating transitioning towards professional football,” said Ung Su Ling, CEO, Yayasan Rakyat 1Malaysia.
“In addition to playing professionally, there is a myriad of other sports related jobs in the market, and we hope that Piala 1Malaysia will open their eyes to these possibilities,” Ung continued.
As a follow on from the Laureus World Sports Awards and Laureus Sport for Good Summit held earlier this year in Kuala Lumpur, the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation will collaborate with YR1M to develop a programme that will help increase the employability of youths.
“We are pleased that the partnership between YR1M and the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation will leverage the power of sport to help improve the lives of young Malaysians. We will focus on training and assist YR1M to build capacity and capability in mentoring and coaching youths towards employment” said Ned Wills, Global Director of the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation.
For the Real Madrid Foundation, this tournament represents the first time it is involved in a nationwide programme in Malaysia and in line with the tournament’s objectives, they will be working with YR1M on developing the skills and attitudes of youths both on and off the football field through their programme.
Driving home the importance of good values and good behaviour was Real Madrid legend Victor Sanchez who said, “Values that you learn while playing football stay with you for the rest of your life. They don’t just apply to football, but also to your life outside football and after football. It helps you with your team mates, your family, your friends, at work and in building your career.”