The signing was done on Wednesday, January 6th at the British Council Hall in Freetown with Simon Ingram-Hill the Council Country Director signing the MOU on behalf of his organisation.
In his address at the signing ceremony, Ingram-Hill said the agreement between the SLFA and Premier Skills will involve community development programs through football.
“Coaches, referees, teachers and even players are given free, compelling learning materials, drawing on football-based content from the most exciting football league in the world. We would like to have 50 percent of women involvement in the first phase of the project which will kick off with the training of 72 coaches by coaches, referees and players from the English Premier League,” Ingram Hill said.
The SLFA boss in her remarks said the FA had waited for more than a year and a half for this opportunity which was thwarted due to the Ebola epidemic in the country. She disclosed that the FA cannot provide 50 percent of female coaches for the project due to the fact that not many women have gone into coaching but assured that they would do their best to get a good number of women involvement throughout the project.
“We will welcome everybody with that sole purpose of coming on board for the development of football in the country. I want to take this opportunity to thank the British Council and the English Premier League for this very good and timely gesture and also assure them that we will use our available resources to make this partnership a success story,” she explained.
The program is scheduled to be launched in February and operational in March this year with the venues and dates to be announced later.
Premier Skills is British Council international partnership with the Premier League and is currently operating in over 25 countries across Asia, Africa and the Americas. It draws upon the Premier League’s global appeal and expertise in delivering community programmes in the UK, alongside the British Council’s global network, track record of delivery and world class expertise in English.
It is a corporate social responsibility program that Premier League Clubs in the UK commit themselves to undertake in certain countries. A number of coaches referees and some players of these clubs, volunteer to coach and assess the skills, development, and community work related activities in these countries.