Never before have so many children played schools football in Hungary
The 2016-17 season has seen 1,445 foundation-level teaching institutes provide football sessions for 71,707 children as part of the OTP Bank Bozsik Institute program organized and supervised by the program’s roots department, MLSZ press release said.
The programme for the 7-14 age-group has seen one-hour sessions take place twice a week. The main aim of these is – in accordance with the UEFA Grassroots programme – to enhance the groups’ experiences of joy, exercise, sport and of coming to love football. It is an emphasised objective for as many little girls as possible to take part in these football sessions and that all those taking part remain involved in football for the rest of their lives.
The grassroots teaching approach builds into becoming a player and taking part in game activities but in the higher age groups success is also a factor. The programme’s organisers also work together with youth clubs and academies in the interest of guiding the most talented children towards clubs and open in front of them the opportunity of a career in football.
Clubs and institutes with teams in the 7-10 years age-group can play football together four times a year as part of the Grassroots Festival while in the 11-14 age group the children play in a more traditional tournament system. MLSZ organises two central events to which participants from every county in the country come. The growth in the participant figures in school football is similar to the huge growth in expansion of the kindergarten programme; five years ago 28,503 children (including 1,935 girls) from 675 comprehensive schools have visited school-football sessions and festivals whereas today the schools programme has encountered the largest improvement in figures of all of the MLSZ grassroots programmes, 55,478 boys and 16,229 girls in 5,721 groups from 230 districts across the country playing regular football.
More than 2000 people are coaching children
The MLSZ puts special emphasis on the training of its football educators, the 2016/17 season seeing 1,141 physical educations teachers, 474 Grassroots C-, 484 UEFA B-, 48 UEFA A- and one UEFA Pro Licence coach engage as leaders of children’s sports groups.
The MLSZ provides a publication to each academic institution which includes tasks and exercises to continually help improving skills. In addition, these responsible adults can participate in a free, voluntary, 16-hour training course as well as taking the opportunity to gain their Grassroots level C coaching qualification. As part of the programme, from September 2016 MLSZ has guaranteed to provide participating teachers and coaches with 30 hours of free, accredited, teacher-training opportunities.
Source: MLSZ – press release