Our journey with disadvantaged children did not start with a ‘grand vision’ of wanting to change the world. Since our weekly football training started in the Circuit Road area in 2015, it was almost ‘routine’ for us to come in contact with young people who were from single parent homes, are on financial assistance, have challenges in school in terms of attendance, results…etc. It didn’t take too long for us to realise that the economic background, and family structure that these kids come from contributed to the challenges that they faced.
A 2012 study by The Brookings Institution in Washington found a 27 percentage point gap in school readiness (for children at age five) between poor children and moderate/high income children. The data showed that it is not poverty alone that places poor children at risk, but also the fact that their parents have low levels of education, higher rates of smoking, higher rates of depression, and lower parenting skills than children from moderate and high income families¹.
In a recent study discussion, involving 56 social groups in the social service sector published by The Straits Times, a conclusion was made that “while education can help bridge social gaps, not every youth can fully tap its benefits.” It was also noted that “economic, social and cultural differences contribute to a greater variance in academic performance among Singaporean students, compared to elsewhere.”
The Champions Unlimited programme aims to address this gap by offering players with the holistic support needed for them to succeed on and off the football pitch. Special thanks to the Rotary Club of Singapore for helping FootballPlus launch its “Champions” programme in 2017 which has allowed us to build upon its success to launch the Champions Unlimited programme.
Who can apply?
- Children and youth between the ages of 7 and 14.
- Currently in need of financial assistance
- Loves football and is committed to weekly trainings and competitions.
How to apply?
Fill up the application form with necessary documents. An interview will be arranged to meet with you and your family