Street soccer promotes social integration
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Helping marginal groups build self-confidence and working with all sectors of society to enhance social integration were the twin aims of a soccer tournament jointly organised by the City–Youth Empowerment Project (CYEP) at City University of Hong Kong (CityU) and Street Soccer Hong Kong on 24 March.
The event was called Street Soccer X CityU • Friendly League 2018.
The main idea is that street soccer can help marginal groups resume a healthier life, according to Dr Elaine Au Liu Suk-ching, Assistant Head and Associate Professor in the Department of Applied Social Sciences and Convener of CYEP.
Participants included members of Dawn Soccer Team, who represented Hong Kong at the Homeless World Cup.
A sharing session before the matches was hosted by Mr Chan Wing-pak, Chairman of the Executive Committee of Street Soccer Hong Kong; Mr Ng Wai-tung, Community Organiser of the Society for Community Organisation and Vice-Chairman of the Executive Committee of Street Soccer Hong Kong; Mr Wu Chung-man, Mr Eddy Lee and Mr Wong Kam-pong, players who have represented Hong Kong at the Homeless World Cup; and Mr Danny Chow Tsz-kin, founder of the CYEP Volunteer Soccer Team cum CityU Convocation Standing Committee Member.
The three soccer players talked about how they were selected for the team and took part in competitions around the world, and how they changed from street sleepers to their current status. Mr Chan, Mr Ng and Mr Chow talked about how sports events can promote social integration and arouse public awareness about the poor and homeless across the globe.
Street Soccer X CityU • Friendly League 2018 was arranged as a five-a-side tournament for six teams: two CityU alumni teams; two Homeless soccer teams; a team comprising CYEP volunteers; and one team from the CityU student residence.