The Futsal Association of T&T (FATT) will host the second edition of Kids’ Connect – a series of free virtual Mental Health webinars for children from August 2 to 6.
According to the FATT Press Release, the ‘new normal’ is affecting many kids’ mental health and this statement is globally recognised and agreed to by many.
Last December, FAAT hosted the successful pilot project which catered to 100 children and included the collaborative efforts of Chaguanas-based non-governmental organizations Dass Trace Youth Empowerment Committee and Jimroy Wyse Committee.
Both youth-oriented organisations engaged in successful and sustained community activities that include ongoing education camps to improve literacy and sporting events such as football, cricket, basketball and netball and all three entities will be back for the second edition.
Kids’ Connect introduces participants - ages 7 to 21 years old - to Mental Health.
The cohort will be split into five (5) age groups. Of note, this edition will have a session for parents/guardians and coaches.
Fun and engaging sessions will be facilitated by qualified and experienced psychologists, mental health workers and advocates.
The age-appropriate content will be delivered via the Zoom platform and streamed via participating entities social media platforms including Facebook and Instagram.
The FATT release added: “Our National Sporting Organisation through our weekly online meetup series ‘Futsal868 Corner Talks’ hosted three (3) 1-hour long episodes on ‘Mental Health and Emotional Intelligence in Sport.”
Guests included Sport Psychologists from the Sport Company of T&T, former Soca Warrior and ESPN Analyst – Shaka Hislop, Olympian and Director of Sport at the University of the West Indies, St Augustine Campus, Grace Jackson and US-based Clinical Psychologist – Melissa Kanhai”.
Geoffrey Edwards, FATT’s president said, “The wealth of information that came our way made us aware that a lot needed to be done as it relates to Mental Health and Youth. Thus, with sport mirroring society, FATT decided to lend a hand through this innovative initiative. We are most proud of the partnership we have established with the Dass Trace Youth Empowerment Committee and Jimroy Wyse Committee led by Justin Lewis and Ginelle Small-Cummings, respectively whose passion for community development is extraordinary.”
President of the Dass Trace Youth Empowerment Committee, Lewis, said the Enterprise NGO welcomes the mental health collaborative project with the FATT since it is in keeping with the group’s goal to promote the holistic development of at-risk youths living in the community.
“We always welcome new opportunities and programmes to engage our youth so they can see the positive alternatives to crime,” said Lewis. He continued: “Mental health is a serious issue that we tend to take for granted. I think this mental health initiative will bring much-needed sensitization and relief to our young people, especially in these uncertain times owing to covid19.”
Small-Cummings who is the president of the Jimroy Wyse Committee expressed her gratitude to Futsal for bringing the initiative to Enterprise. She said: “Both the Jim Wyse and Dass Trace committees took this opportunity so we could make a difference in the lives of Enterprise youths."
Interested parents/guardians, coaches and NGOs can register their children by completing the KIDS’ CONNECT Form on the Futsal Association of Trinidad & Tobago’s Facebook Page (Keyword: Futsal868).