Finding Their Place On The Field

Kampuchea Balopp

At the recent Cambodian domestic rugby 7s Round#4 event on March 23rd 2014, more of the children we work with got to put their months of hard practise to play as they took to the field as a team to compete for the first time.

Kampuchea Balopp is fortunate to be currently working with a dozen varied NGO’s in Cambodia but the common theme with all of our partner organisations is that the children they assist come from incredibly disadvantaged backgrounds. Its through rugby and  youth development that we can see the kids gain in confidence, build on teamwork and discipline skills and just as importantly have fun.

With the range of childrens ages that Kampuchea Balopp works with expanding, teams from under 9 through to under 18 years old participated at the recent domestic rugby round #4 and in all the categories, most of the teams were developed and coached by Kampuchea Balopp.

In Under 9, Under 11, and Under 13, the kids from the “Our Home” NGO played in their first official games. It was really exciting for all of them and after 6 months of training, it was the first time they were wearing as a team, their rugby jerseys and shorts and could represent their NGO in a tournament.

Nahema, the french NGO coordinator was really enthusiastic about the day.”The kids were so impatient to come here to play, when they understood they will play games against other kids that they have never seen, they were very excited. And today was a very happy moment for all of them, even if we lost most of our games. They already have asked me when is the next  tournament! “

Kids from Taramana, Enfants d’Asie Aspeca, PSE (Pour un Sourire d’Enfant), CCF (Cambodian Children’s Fund), CED (Cambodge Enfance Developpement) and Soksabay, all of whom are partner NGO’s with Kampuchea Balopp also participated in this great day of rugby. The smiles and joy on the children’s faces enforce the idea that the programs we are developing are making a lasting impression and encourage us to further promote and develop youth development through sports.

All of the partner NGO’s and more will be present next Sunday 6th April at the ANZ Grassroots rugby day, but not to play against each other, but to play ALL together.

Some of the kids we work with don’t have a place of their own to call a conventional home, but playing together on the rugby field they all look at home.

(All photos credit to Jean Marie Brun and Pierres Yves Tondeur)

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