KB Rugby Field Official Inauguration !

For a number of years Kampuchea Balopp has contributed to the development and education of Cambodian youth through sport.  Through the program, it provides educators and moral values which are essential to the sports development and well-being of the children.

During this time, we have forged strong links with a growing number of NGOs from the 4 corners of Phnom Penh.  Initially the trainings, led by our teams, were made within the schools or centres with which we work.  Gradually we moved the children by organizing trainings on synthetic sports fields, providing more comfort and more safety for the children.

This month of May 2016 marks the start of a new era for Kampuchea Balopp and the 800 children who benefit from our program.   Indeed, thanks to the outstanding support of the Decathlon Foundation, we were able to build the first synthetic field dedicated to rugby in Cambodia.  This will allow our educators to work in optimal conditions and was a first for Cambodia for rugby.

Located at PSE (Pour un Sourire d’Enfant), one of our long-term partner organisations, this 60m long and 30m wide field, is equipped with changing rooms and goalposts.  Plus, our educators will be able to centralise our activities in one place.  Everything has been designed to also practice football and handball activities on the field (the requisite lines drawn, interchangable posts etc).

Charline Duriaud and Sothary Keo are among those without whom this project would not have been possible.  Both employed by Decathlon Cambodia, they went to present the project in France with Decathlon Foundation and to raise funds.  Then they participated in the development of the project.

Here is an interview with Sothary and Charline:

What is your position at Decathlon Cambodia?

Sothary : I’m IPL, it means Industrial production Leader.

Charline : I’m SPL, Supply Production Leader. I work with textile factories to check the process and the meeting deadline for the orders we get from everywhere in the world.

What is the aim of the Fondation Decathlon?

Fondation Decathlon was  created to encourage Decathlon staff to be involved in sports related projects that pomotes social insertion.

Charline, can you tell us why you wanted to support Kampuchea Balopp? 

When I arrived in Cambodia, I met JB (Jean-Baptiste Suberbie, KB Founder) and I found his ambitions very courageous, especially to develop such an unknown sport in Cambodia.  Then, I attended some training sessions, and the motivation, energy and pleasure of the kids was enough to convince me that I could do something.  They had no proper sports clothes, and we are producing them just over here, we had to find a way to help them to practice in better conditions.

How did you manage, with Charline, to convince the Foundation to support Kampuchea Balopp?

We closely work together. Our goal, helping children and disabled children through sports and physical education, convinced the Foundation.  We know Kampuchea Balopp works for the same objectives.

On the 10th of May, we celebrated the inauguration. Around 50 people attended the event, and upon arrival the guests watched a training session with disabled children from Krousar Thmey Foundation (blind and hearing impaired kids) and children from PSE. The ceremony started with the opening of the commemorative plaque. Afterwards, the co-founders of Kampuchea Balopp, Nicolas Olivry and Jean Baptiste Suberbie made a speech. They shared with us their beliefs about sport and child development and reminded us how sport can help children to grow with good values such as respect, tolerance and team spirit.
After that, His Excellency Bou Chom Serey, Deputy Secreatary of State of the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport spoke.  He congratulated the job of Kampuchea Balopp, PSE and Decathlon and assured us that the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport appreciates that kind of project and will continue to support it. We also heard a speech from the Decathlon Foundation represented by Charline Duriaud and Sothary Keo.

At the end of the ceremony, Kampuchea Balopp organised a mixed exhibition game (tag rugby) with the children of PSE and Krousar Thmey to demonstrate some of the qualities that KB promotes, including gender equality and social inclusion.

We would like to thank everyone who attended the event and all of our supporters without which it would not have been possible.

We would also like to thank the media who covered our event:

Stuff Cambodia:  English http://stuff-cambodia.com/lifestyle/fitnesshealth/5382

Khmer http://stuff-cambodia.com/kh/cambodia-kh/5406

Sabay:  http://news.sabay.com.kh/article/708348

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