In September 2019, Hurricane Dorian caused mass destruction across the Bahamas. The Scottish FA donated $40,000 through the UEFA Assist programme to help the Bahamas FA rebuild its footballing infrastructure.
When the hurricane hit, the Scottish FA donated funds to ensure the Bahamas FA was able to purchase vital equipment to enable it to continue to play and develop the game.
A valuable vehicle in times of crisis
The Scottish FA recognised that the UEFA Assist programme was a valuable vehicle to support the Bahamas in this time of crisis. The UEFA initiative offers the sharing of knowledge and best practices to help other football confederations develop and strengthen football within their respective territories.
Assist allows UEFA's member associations to develop their own projects with football associations outside Europe. The programme also aims to increase solidarity and enhance football development to tackle the needs of national associations and confederations in other parts of the world.
"The Scottish FA is delighted to provide assistance to the Bahamas FA in any way it can to ensure football is able to flourish across the country," said the Scottish FA’s head of football development, Andy Gould.
"We hope our support will not only help provide vital resources to the game but also forge a long-lasting partnership that will promote, foster and develop the game at all levels.
"We recognise that our coaches in Scotland are central to providing high-quality activity and establishing a positive culture for our players, and we look forward to sharing how we have achieved this with the Bahamas FA and assisting them in developing their own coach education framework."
In addition, the Scottish FA will look to support the development of coach education work in the Bahamas in the coming years, providing mentors to share theoretical, observational and practical learning.
"We are very grateful and appreciative for the help and support we have received from the Scottish FA to help develop the game in our country," said the president of the Bahamas Football Association, Anton Sealey.
"Hurricane Dorian was obviously a setback for football in our country, but with the help of the Scottish FA, who are providing us with high-quality coaches and allowing us to obtain much- needed equipment, this can help us to move forward. I hope that our newly formed partnership will continue to develop over the coming years."
The Scottish FA will also provide advice to the Bahamas FA on strategic and operational management and how to retain coaches and players. Work will also be done on the development of grassroots and youth football in the Bahamas.
The overall aim is not only to improve the quality of the Bahamas FA coaching workforce but also to increase the level of coach education attainment.
By working with UEFA’s five sister confederations and their member associations, the Assist programme contributes to the global development of football. It does this by sharing European knowledge and best practice and supporting countries whose players contribute so much to the beautiful game.
So far, Assist has channelled UEFA support to more than 200 football development projects in close to 60 countries worldwide. Initiatives focus on four main goals:
- Building capacity
- Developing youth football
- Strengthening infrasructure
- Supporting UEFA member associations
The original article can be found here.