Football: S’pore Premier League players donate used shoes to underprivileged youth, Football News & Top Stories


SINGAPORE – After hearing about a teenager who kept slipping on the pitch during training because he didn’t own football boots, a light bulb went out for former national striker Aleksandar Duric.

He told the Straits Times: “When I was a player at the end of the season we used to throw away most of our shoes.

“So I thought, why don’t I grab some boots from the local clubs and pass them on to the kids who need them? I picked up the phone and called all my khakis (singlish for friends) and all the world was happy to help me. “

Duric, who retired in 2015 and is now director of the ActiveSG football academy run by the national agency Sport Singapore, called on his former teammates and contacts at all eight professional clubs in the Singapore Premier League (SPL) and everyone volunteered to help with the shoe drive.

Since the end of the SPL season last Sunday (October 10), Duric has received over 40 pairs of football boots – which can cost over $ 300 a pair – and other items like goalie gloves, shin guards and running shoes.

The first pair went to the player who sparked Duric’s idea. Youth is part of the Saturday Night Lights program, which aims to get disadvantaged and at-risk youth off the streets through formal football training on Saturday nights.

The gifts go beyond a simple functional role, said Duric. They also have an aspiration.

“Imagine how one of these boys will feel training and playing knowing he’s wearing (national captain) Hariss Harun’s boots,” he said.

Shawn Lim, head of SportCares that runs the Saturday Night Lights program, added that the boots campaign aligned with SportSG’s efforts under the Singapore Green Plan 2030, unveiled by the government in February to advance the national agenda. sustainable development.

One of the goals of the plan is for Singapore to reduce waste sent to landfill by 30%, targeting a 20% reduction by 2026.

Lim said: “This is a great opportunity for us to contribute to Singapore’s Green Plan by avoiding waste and extending the life of the boots, many of which are in good condition.”

He added that SportSG will also explore possibilities of distributing the equipment to young players in need who may not be part of the SportCares or SportSG programs.

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