Korean Football Association Football-Love Sharing Foundation has donated $15,000 to the Northern Mariana Islands Football Association to assist in the repair work at the NMI Soccer Training Center in Koblerville.
KFA Football-Love Sharing Foundation chair Kap Jin Lee personally came to Saipan last Friday to hand over the donation to NMIFA president Jerry Tan in the presence of other NMIFA officials.
“It’s my great pleasure to come here to Saipan and share this small amount from our foundation to NMIFA to help in the repair of your facility,” Lee said. “We, at the KFA Football-Love Sharing Foundation believe that we are one football family in Asia and we always want to look for ways to help our family members.”
Before turning over the foundation’s donation, Lee watched a video presentation featuring the NMI Soccer Training Center—the groundbreaking ceremony, the construction process, the inauguration, the games and events hosted at the facility, and its post-Super Typhoon Yutu condition.
“I understand how difficult it is to have a brand new facility only to be destroyed just a few months after it was opened. But I am confident that through NMIFA’s leadership and the support of other people and groups, complete repairs will be done so more players will continue to benefit from the facility,” Lee said.
NMIFA president Jerry Tan thanked Lee and the KFA Football-Love Sharing Foundation for their assistance, as it will definitely help facilitate the ongoing rebuilding efforts being done at the NMISTC.
“We are deeply grateful to the KFA Football-Love Sharing Foundation for their generosity. We need all the help we could get to fix our facility, as we seek to provide more players the opportunity to play soccer in a safe and appropriate environment,” Tan said.
When Yutu hit Saipan in late October last year, the NMISTC sustained massive damage. NMITA managed to repair and save other features of the facility, including the main pitch. The secondary pitch, on the other hand, was torn down, leaving NMIFA with only the main pitch to host games and other soccer-related activities. School pitches are also not safe to hold matches, so NMIFA has to rely solely on the main pitch.
“We will continue with the repair work, including the construction of the new secondary pitch and other improvements, and with the help of KFA Football-Love Sharing Foundation, the Asian Football Confederation, and other generous supporters, I am confident that we will be successful with this project,” the NMIFA head added.
Meanwhile, Lee said that the foundation’s assistance to NMIFA will not stop with their donation for the NMISTC repair.
“We will find another way to help NMIFA in the future. We love what they are doing, spreading the culture of soccer, which is also what we do in South Korea,” Lee said.
Korean Football Association Football-Love Sharing Foundation was established in 2004 under the name of Youth Football Foundation. Initially, it aimed at developing grassroots football in South Korea through the help of KFA and the earnings from the 2002 FIFA World Cup co-hosted by the country with Japan. It provided scholarship for youth players and educational materials and supported players in international tournaments.
Then just last year, the group was renamed to Korean Football Association Football-Love Sharing Foundation and it began reaching out to football communities outside South Korea.
“We would like to share football love to other people. We are not focusing on raising elite players, but providing opportunities to more people to enjoy the game of football. The sport has a lot of positives to offer in our community. It teaches teamwork, friendship, confidence, sportsmanship and a lot more good values. It brings people together, as we share one common love—love for football,” Lee said. (PR)