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UAE Football Association and Mubadala Kick Off Grassroots Football Festivals

The UAE Football Association (UAEFA) and Mubadala Development Company (Mubadala), the official sponsor of the UAE National Teams and Exclusive Grassroots and Youth Development partner are launching the UAEFA’s 2010 pilot youth development program through the “UAEFA Grassroots Festivals.”

17 April 2010

Festivals to be held across the UAE by FIFA accredited coaches

The UAE Football Association (UAEFA) and Mubadala Development Company (Mubadala), the official sponsor of the UAE National Teams and Exclusive Grassroots and Youth Development partner are launching the UAEFA’s 2010 pilot youth development program through the “UAEFA Grassroots Festivals.”

The festivals will launch on April 18 in Abu Dhabi marking the first phase of the program and providing boys and girls between the ages of six to twelve years with the opportunity to receive football lessons from FIFA accredited coaches.

The festivals will then travel to Dubai, Sharjah and Fujairah, culminating in a National Festival at Zayed Sports City Stadium. If successful, the pilot will be extended to a wider talent identification program.

Children from each Emirate have been selected by the Local Education Authorities, with local male and female FIFA accredited coaches leading the skills enhancement sessions. At the end of each Festival, children will be divided into teams and play a mini tournament.

The top teams from each emirate will then compete against one another at the National Festival held at Zayed Sports City on 2 May.

HE Mohammed Khalfan Al-Rumaithi, President of the UAEFA commented: “We are delighted to partner with Mubadala and the Local Education Authorities to launch the first stage of our grassroots and youth development program.

Youth development programs like these are vital to the development of football in the UAE.

Through the Festivals, we hope that children across the country will learn basic football skills and develop a greater love for the game.”

Mubadala’s support of the “Grassroots Festivals” comes as part of the 4 year sponsorship deal the development company signed with the UAE FA last September.

As partners of the UAE FA, Mubadala are committed to playing an active role in facilitating the growth of sport across the nation, from developing vital infrastructure and facilities through to supporting the UAE FA in its ambitions to create a talent pool for years to come.

“We are proud to support the development of football in the UAE and partner the UAEFA as well as the Local Education Authorities to pilot the upcoming Grassroots Festivals ,” said Khaldoon Khalifa Al Mubarak CEO & Managing Director. “We are committed to supporting the UAEFA in their aim to deliver a Grassroots and Youth Development Program that excites and involves children across the country. Sports are an essential part of a healthy community and can help children to develop a strong sense of self-esteem, ambition, confidence and leadership skills – skills that are required for success in all facets of life.”

Specialists will be present at the National Festival to provide children and their parents with healthy eating and exercising advice.

Studies have shown that sports play a fundamental role in a child’s development, and the skills children acquire in sports greatly benefit them in their everyday lives and professional careers.

About Mubadala Development Company

Mubadala Development Company (Mubadala) is a catalyst for the economic diversification of Abu Dhabi. Established and owned by the Government, the company’s strategy is built on the management of long-term, capital-intensive investments that deliver strong financial returns and tangible social benefits for the Emirate.

Mubadala brings together and manages a multi-billion dollar portfolio of local, regional, and international investments. The company partners with leading global organizations to operate businesses across a wide range of industry sectors including aerospace, energy and industry, healthcare, information communications and technology, infrastructure and real estate. By doing so, Mubadala accomplishes its mission to expand the economic base of the Emirate and contribute to the growth and diversification of the Abu Dhabi economy.

For more information about Mubadala, its partnerships and activities please visit http://www.mubadala.ae.

Media Contact:

Salam Kitmitto
Edelman Public Relations
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