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Odisha Chief Minister launches India's first FIFA Football for School Programme

Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Wednesday launched India's first-ever FIFA Football for School Programme at Kalinga Institute of Social Science (KISS).

Football for Schools (F4S) is an ambitious worldwide programme run by FIFA, which aims to contribute to the education, development and empowerment of around 700 million children. It seeks to make football more accessible to both boys and girls around the world.

Inaugurating the programme, the Chief Minister said, "Investment in sports is an investment in youth. And investment in youth is an investment in the future. Such collaboration to incorporate football activities into the education system will make football more accessible to both boys and girls at the grassroots."

The launch ceremony was also virtually graced by Dr Nik Gugger, Member of Parliament, Switzerland and Gianni Infantino, President, FIFA.

In his virtual address, Dr Nik Gugger said, "The State of Odisha, under the leadership of Naveen Patnaik, has been promoting sports in a big way and has created an example for the whole country."

He later commended Dr Samanta's contributions to sports and said, "Dr Samanta has created unparalleled sports infrastructure and invested in sports and sportspersons that is now yielding returns. This first-ever initiative of Football for Schools programme by FIFA in India at KISS is an outcome of his relentless contribution in the field of sport."

In the run-up to the launch of the FIFA Football for School Programme, a three-day 'Capacity Building Workshop - Train the Trainer' was conducted by FIFA at KISS on October 25.

As many as 100 Physical Education teachers from all districts of Odisha and over 100 football players from KIIT & KISS participated in the training programme, which included both classrooms as well as field sessions. (ANI)

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