The Children of Ireland Group
P. O. Box 13241, Tallahassee, Florida 32317
Telephone: (850) 562-6466 Ext. 3307

Email: terry@thetrakker.com
A 501(c)(3) Non-Profit Organization

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00-12 Request

The Maiden City Soccer Schools in Drumahoe, County Londonderry presents the following information on their funding request:

"Mission Statement

Our mission is to bring the children of Northern Ireland together in a spirit of friendship and reconciliation. At the moment, Catholic and Protestant children in Northern Ireland are deeply segregated from each other. Through the medium of soccer, a sport immensely popular with both boys and girls from these communities, we will provide an environment in which different traditions and cultures can come together.

Board of Trustees

The Board of Trustees has been established to oversee the philosophy and operation of the project. Members are updated on a quarterly basis as to the projects' progress. Members include John Hume, the recent Nobel Prize winner, and Seamum Malin, the Director of the International Office at Harvard University.

Need

Presently in Northern Ireland, Catholic and Protestant children are segregated in almost every way possible. They live in different neighborhoods and attend different schools. There is little or no opportunity for these groups to mix in a social environment. It is our purpose to provide a positive, sporting environment where they can integrate but also address cultural differences and similarities through a structured curriculum. The segregation of society has sustained the conflict between the two communities in Northern Ireland. Each side feels social and political pressure to show disdain for their neighbors. They are left with a curiosity that breeds contempt.

Without any interaction between the two traditions, the same bitter feelings currently harbored for the "other side" will persist. The ratification of the peace process is an enormous step towards peace but initiatives must be taken to ensure that we continue to move in the right direction. We must find a way to integrate today's children so that they can grow up together and learn together. The next generation of parents must teach patience, tolerance and respect for other traditions. We must familiarize children from both communities with each other. By playing and learning soccer together in Success in Soccer, our youth will realize that they have much to obtain from knowing their neighbors. Success in Soccer Summer Fun Weeks will help create the channels of communication to maintain a stable and peaceful society in Northern Ireland and the border counties.

The political arena has always labeled Catholics and Protestants as two very different races of people. The reality of the matter is that we are in fact very similar. Success in Soccer Summer Fun Weeks will stress the similarities between Catholics and Protestants. We will show the children of Northern Ireland that they have no enemies, only friends from a different tradition. Ultimately, we believe all schools must become integrated. However, education integration will take a number of years due to the enormous logistical issues involved. We must act now and create ways to change society to bring both sides of the divide together.

The Project Manager

Joe Bradley grew up in Creggan estate in Derry, Northern Ireland. He played for the Northern Ireland Schools and Youth National teams before attending Harvard University in 1990. He currently is the General Manager for Massachusetts Professional Soccer, Inc. Mr. Bradley is also a professional player with the Boston Bulldogs.

Implementation of the Project

Our goal is to run 4 weeks of Camp during the summer of 2001 with 200 children participating each week. We intend to use the resources already established by the Maiden City Soccer School. In the past three years, Maiden City have run successful Summer Fun Weeks at various sites throughout Northern Ireland.

Curriculum

The curriculum will be educationally based. The coaching philosophy will be called 'Friends in Football' and will be designed using Northeastern University's 'Project Teamwork' and the Northern Ireland Sports Council's 'Sport in the Community' program.

Marketing

We will market Success in Soccer as a unique program offering a high level of soccer coaching in an environment that promotes cross community/cross border relations."

Funding Request

The organization presents the following funding request:

400 T-Shirts  $4,000
400 Balls  6,000
100 Training Bibs 400
200 Safety Cones 50
6 Mini Soccer Portable Goals 1000

Total:

approximately   $11,450

 

 
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