Untimely heavy rains not only delayed the ongoing Stadium work, but caused us Rs.2L plus damage too.
The ground is ready for academy coaching and practice games, both are going on in full swing. We may leave it as it is, as our training pitch, and continue searching for an alternative site to build an astro turf floodlit solar powered “International Stadium”. If our fundraising campaign doesn’t hit the target we can always retreat and be satisfied with the leased Stadium by upgrading it.
Plans are ready for submission to the Panchayat for building permit. First phase of two dorms for 26 boys will he ready by the next school year since we are not seeking donations: My siblings and their (and mine) children are sharing the cost with me.
The master plan is to have eight such dorms. Of the total 208, at least 188 will be paying and 20 will be reserved for poor children. Fees will be structured to make the operation self financing.
As a part of the vetting process, ARSENAL F.C. sent a coach for two weeks to watch our coaches in action and to train them. With Shashi’s help, the Indian visa was obtained with no hassle and Our Chairman Chandru convened a Press Conference at Hilton to introduce Coach Chris Abel, thank you Johny Muthoot: the media coverage was phenomenal.
In another master stroke, we partnered with Kerala Football Association and Sports Authority of India to conduct a refresher course for about 44 coaches (only 10 of our own) for six days. Sally and I attended their closing ceremony and let Dr. Kishore, the SAI chief here, know that the session happened because of KovalamFC’s philosophy, “thinking beyond KovalamFC”.
I think that Chris will submit a very favourable report to ARSENAL and we will get a partnership status with them. What it means is that they will send us their coaches for three months at a time, twice a year. Our senior players and coaches could attend their coaching camps.
While in USA, I met three FCs:
(1)a professional club, San Jose Earth Quakes; (2) a social club, MVLA Soccer Club with over 3,000 girls and boys from age 8 to 16 registered trainees and over twenty affiliates (3) F.C. Dallas, the biggest Football Academy in North America financed by Toyota.
The first one agreed to let our players and coaches in their training camps. Problems are visa and hosting families. Dr Kishore said that visa applications could be made through India Govt. and that it should ease the problem.
MVLASC CEO promised to persuade his Board to sign up a sister club agreement with us. Our teams can go there for match training, their teams will visit Kerala for the same. They may sent us a U14 coach for two weeks soon.
DallasFC U18 coach, Mr. Pritchett will be here in January 2019 for two weeks to train our Senior Team to prepare them for the India Premier League championship.
The major achievement was to sign a partnership deed with a 501C Corporation under which they, California Business Alliance, can receive and transfer donations for us. I sent out five mailers targeting TVM expatriates living in USA and three hit the bullseye. I have about 30 other addresses and hopefully the response should be encouraging, insah allah!! PLEASE GIVE ME MAILING ADDRESSES OF ALL TVM EXPATRIATES you know and I will send them the appeal along with a brochure saying who we are, where we are and where we want to be five years from now. To achieve our ultimate goal to build an International Football Village we require a large infusion of funds and with your cooperation we can do it.
Please make time to visit one of our training sessions in Arumanoor Stadium any Saturday or Sunday evening. Call me and I will be there to escort you.