Just Children Foundation
of Zimbabwe

Off the streets and on to a better future

Breaking Barriers through Sport

CHILDREN who come from broken families often grow up with a very low self–esteem and little confidence.

Social workers contend that such children begin to look at themselves through a negative perspective, often viewing themselves as outcasts who can never be good at anything in life.

But certain corrective measures can be put in place to build self–confidence – one such measure is the world’s most popular game of soccer.
The Just Children Foundation (JCF) football team at Faith & Hope Centre, popularly known as Crystal Stars, recently took part in the Child Integration through Sport tournament in which they beat nine other teams.

The JCF assistant re–unifications officer, Cabe Muusha, said they decided to organise the tournament after they had met with the organisers of Magariro Arts Festival held recently in Highfield, to see how best disadvantaged children could be assisted to develop through sport.

“After realising the success of the arts festival, we felt it would be profitable for our children to meet and play together with other children from the community,” he said.

Last Zulu, 14, said it was his first time to participate in such a tournament.

“It was the biggest match I have ever participated in, playing with different teams. We played an excellent game and beat all the other teams,” he said.

Billy, 15, said the tournament could be taken as a yardstick to measure their performance.

“This boosted our esteem and confidence. It was also a platform for us to showcase our talents,” he said.

He added that through the tournament, they also learnt how Red Cross medics attended to the injured.

Talent (12) said he loved sport and wanted to refine his skills and earn a living through sport in future. He added that sport also enabled him to mingle with other children in the community.

Philip (14) is also convinced that soccer could be a platform through which he could refine his social skills and have something to preoccupy himself.

“Soccer will help to avoid anti–social activities like drug abuse,” he said.

The JCF team has been dormant over the past years as its stability was affected by the continued movement of children.

Muusha said the team was not only for children at Faith & Hope Centre, but was also open for children in the community.

“Children from the surrounding community are also eligible for selection into the team since its purpose is integrating children from different backgrounds,” he said –The

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