The workshop is being attended by representatives of 10 state associations.

The two-day FIFA Capacity Building Workshop for State Associations (India) kicked-off in Dwarka, New Delhi on Thursday (September 26, 2019). The workshop is being attended by representatives of 10 state associations including Presidents/General Secretaries/Chairmans, and State Development Managers.

The Capacity Building programme which falls under FIFA Forward was launched in 2018. The programme was initially launched with 11 states.

Welcoming all delegates and participants, Mr. Kushal Das, General Secretary, All India Football Federation hoped “there will be a lot of learnings from the workshop.”

“Capacity building of State Associations has its own challenges, and is a critical aspect. We have been trying to do it for long, and while there have been some states who have been successful, most need to up the ante,” the General Secretary maintained.

“Under FIFA Forward we have assisted AIFF with competitions, the Golden Baby Leagues, the Hero Indian Women’s League, state development, the Hero Sub Junior Youth League, the NCE, etc,” Mr. Sanjeevan C Balasingam, Director MA Asia and Oceania, FIFA stated. “India are no more a sleeping giant. Instead, India is wide awake, the results against Qatar being the best example. We want to take it one step further, and we are here to take India to the top of World football.”

“It’s important that the State Associations participate in a robust manner, and create the essential structure for development. We at AIFF have developed our Strategic Plan and the support from the Government has been immense after we presented it to them,” Mr. Das commented.

The General Secretary also referred to the Government of Odisha saying “the objective is to develop, and implement it in your respective states.”

Highlighting the value addition implemented by the FIFA Capacity Building Workshop for State Associations, Mr Sunando Dhar, CEO I-League explained, “It’s important to look back at the events taken place last year, and plan for the next year.”

“The youth leagues from U-13 to U-18 have taken over the sentiments of the entire country. As we move ahead, the Khelo India Girls League is all set to kick-off next month,” Dhar stated. “Over 21000 players were part of the Golden Baby Leagues last season, and we aim to touch the 35k mark this year. All of that wouldn’t have been possible without the support of the State Associations.”

“It’s great to see senior office bearers like Mr. Subrata Datta (Senior Vice-President, AIFF, also Chairman IFA), Mr. ZA Thakur (Treasurer, AIFF, also President JKFA), and AIFF Executive Committee member Mr. Jessiah Villavarayar, President, TNFA) attending the workshop. It defines the seriousness of some of the State Associations.”

“Hopefully everyone would be going back with their leanings, and implement them in their respective states. We are happy to help, and can even do a six-monthly monthly review,” Mr. Das informed.