Official Opening of Drop in Center and Payatas FC 1st Year Anniversary

This is the exciting update for the Fair Play for All Foundation. Just a couple months ago, the foundation celebrated their one year anniversary. The celebration included the long awaited official opening of the new drop in center located in the heart of Payatas and home to Payatas FC and the FFA.

I was honored to be given the opportunity to experience and be apart of the opening ceremony. Much like opening ceremonies in businesses and companies, the day represented the official start to a new beginning and a true first step forward. Though Roy and Naomi’s hard work, dedication and persistence had started long before the opening, this day was a special moment to everyone involved. It signified the birth date of their vision already in motion and their mission already making progress.

For me, it was a true privilege to experience the day that included an award ceremony for the players of Payatas FC for their performance and commitment to the sport and to their team. The feeling of camaraderie and teamwork that united an entire community truly filled every moment. It was also nice to play in a little friendly match between myself teamed up with Nate Burkey versus the Payatas FC kids. We even lost to little developing players, who displayed wonderful skills and fierce determination.

The ribbon cutting for me truly made me feel a sense of pride and appreciation for what Roy and Naomi have done. It made me realize their willingness to share such a significant day with others. They reminded me that such a momentous ceremony for the drop in center was just a small piece to the work they do. It showed us all that the center will remain only a physical structure that is incomparable to its meaning. To them both, the kids of Payatas, and the entire community the safety, the education and the care they provide will remain at the very core, and no ceremony can ever outshine their sweat and tears poured into their work.

Check out the Fair Play For All Foundations News Letter below and Stay connected with all that is going on with their organization.

At the moment Naomi Tomlinson has been nominated for the UK’s “Charity Women of the Year” Award for her work with Tripple E, the Fair Play For All Foundation and Payatas FC. Please stayed tuned for more on her amazing journey.

For the latest updates on Naomi and Roy please visit their blogs for upcoming events, volunteer opportunities and ways to support the FFA.

“Triking” to Payatas

For my very first trip out to visit the new location of the Drop in center for the Fair Play for All Foundation, I had quite the travel experience. Day started with a short cab ride to the Ayala MRT Station, followed by a crowed rush-hour ride to North Ave. Once I was off the train, I jumped into another cab to St. Peter’s Church on Commonwealth Ave, where I met up with FFA’s Co-Founder Naomi Tomlinson. We then hopped into a Jeepney that took us to another Jeepney before reaching our destination. For a new commuter, that single leg, one way journey might have been a bit overwhelming, but for a daily experienced commuter, that is not much at all. In fact my taxi rides could have easily been substituted with Jeepneys without a problem.

So, after a long day of cleaning and preparing the house for initial renovations and remodeling, it was time to wash up. We jumped on a fully loaded Trike and road to the next town over to shower up and head to lunch. By “Fully-Loaded” I meant the Trike was filled with Five passengers plus the driver. Barely hanging off the back of this trike with a large bag flying off to the side, I held on with a tight grip pressed up against the driver. Though I almost bounced off, it wasn’t until later that I understood why we were in the best seats on a trike.

After cleaning up, it was time to get back and have some food. Way into the afternoon now and hungry as ever, we began our trek back home, or should I say, “trike” back home. This time we had the awesome opportunity to sit in the side car. It wasn’t until that moment I realized how tiny the space actually was in there. We packed 3 adults in the little egg crate cart and proceeded on the bumpy ride. This was just one of the highlights of the day and it was quite the experience to have traveled out to Payatas to lend a helping hand to a very special organization, all the meanwhile, getting to really experience the city and the country’s culture.

Couldn’t ask for more from a wonderful day to Payatas. Yes, the return journey include: 1 trike, 2 jeepneys, 1 train, and 1 taxi. The only thing I didn’t get to try that day was a Boat and a Bus ride. Perhaps next time I will get those in as well. Until then, stay tuned for more travel stories.

Hammering Out the Old Drives New Hope: FFA’s New Home

Today I had the very special opportunity to not only take a look what will become the Fair Play for All Foundations new home, I had the chance to help with it’s initial construction. In actuality, it was really more like it’s “deconstruction.” When I was told that the foundation had finally found it’s first physical location after a grueling search for the right place and size, I was more than excited to see it. I was told it needed a lot of work, so I didn’t know what to expect. When I finally had the opening in my training schedule to see it, I set up the time to take a tour and help with it’s initial handy work.

The first time I met the founders of the FFA, Roy and Naomi, I knew they had started something quite special and when I first had the chance to meet the players they “coached,” I knew they were making real changes to the lives of the children in Payatas. From that point, I really wanted to make the effort to help and assist the foundation in any way I could. As I am still learning about what the organization does, what it stands for and who they help, I felt the need to see it for myself and try to absorb more of what the it does.

So my day began by simply having to get to Payatas, which was an adventure in itself. I woke up nice an early and jumped in a cab to the MRT, taking it to North Avenue. This was my very first time taking the train by the way, and the excitement of working commuters overwhelmed the morning travel. The train cars were packed. When I arrived, I jumped into another taxi to St.Peter’s Church to where I met Noami, and we took a Jeepney to the foundations new home.

Before getting to work, Naomi kindly took me on a tour of Payatas showing me the village and the dump site,  as she guided me through the daily happenings of the locals. When we arrived at there, we walked through the gated family-owned property and through the back entrance of the new home. The space opened into a large kitchen, and first floor of the Center to-be seemed quite spacious. We proceeded to the abandoned dimly-light second floor and started to calculate what was to be done for the day.  It was very apparent that there was plenty of work to do, as the space was unoccupied for years and signs of damage, wear, and neglect were evident.

To others, such a daunting task of cleaning up, renovating and rebuilding a home to this extent, might seem impossible and even worthless, but to Naomi and Roy, they saw it’s great potential in becoming a refuge and a relief for broken children in Payatas. For them nothing seemed too daunting or too difficult, in the light of rescuing children from their daily struggles and impoverished conditions. Thier passion, drive, and motivation becomes most powerful when they spoke about their plans for the new drop-in center and it really inspired me.

Today, we purchased a hammer and began the initial demolition and clean up of the second floor. Getting our hands dirty was quite the understatement and I was glad to be a part of every second of it.  I believe we accomplished enough for the future carpenters and cleaning crews to come in and make sound design decisions and take the second step of this process to another level. I am truly excited to help in the next stages and I can not wait to see it’s final product. From the hopes and vision of something special, it is now up to everyone’s efforts to make the dream become a reality.

Please stay tuned for updates on the progress of the New FFA Drop-In Center!

For the latest updates on Naomi and Roy please visit their blogs for upcoming events, volunteer opportunities and ways to support the FFA.

Please be sure to Follow Me on Twitter @LextonMoy to keep undated with all that is going on with the Philippine Azkals, Kaya FC, and my experiences living in Manila and Traveling Asia!

Fair Play For All Foundation – Philippines

This past Saturday, teammate Nate Burkey, member of the Philippine Azkals and I had the most wonderful soccer experience, that truly brought us back to some great childhood memories. August 20th marked the opening competition for an unlikely group of footballers here in Manila.  For the past six months a group of children from Payatas, Manila’s lastest garbage dump site, have been meeting once a week to do something most normal kids take for granted. For the children of Payatas, education, health, hygene, and support are scarce and many look to the darker sides of life to find drug induced glimpses of joy. Each week they are given the oppurtunity to meet in a safe enviorment where the harsh daily grind of scavenging acres of rubbish seemingly disapears for at least a couple hours, and the joys of being children again comes to visit them in the form of a Soccer Ball.  The love, support and care provided to the small percentage of Payatas children come from a group of passionate people that formed the Fair Play For All Foundation (FFA).

The Fairplay For All Foundation works to empower the street children of the Philippines. Registered in the UK and funded as Triple E (registration number 1141362), Fairplay for All (FFA) runs football teams in Kasiglahan and Payatas as a way to develop the community and raise awareness through football, after the rise in popularity of the Azkals, the national men’s team of the Philippines. Payatas… is the largest dumpsite in Manila where tens of thousands of people live scavenging for things to sell, recycle and even eat.
 
With just their first soccer competition underway, the organization will look to expand their work beyond the sport to reach what is at the heart of the problem amongst this growing population plagued with poverty.
FFA is also opening a drop-in centre for street children in order to assess their situation on a case-by-case basis. Providing for the nutrition of street children, to break drug dependency (particularly rugby), basic education will continue their learning and provide a platform to assess their situation. With a fully qualified and experienced social worker we will then look to provide full-time residential care, education sponsorship, or micro-financing depending on the reason for the child being on the streets. As such, FFA looks to enable, encourage and empower street children and raise awareness of the poverty of communities to promote Fairplay on and off the pitch.
 
On Staurday, Payatas FC finished 9th overall in the Under 13 age bracket, out of 33 local team from around Manila with an impressive 3-1-1 record.  With loves, and support from volunteers, other teams and local bystanders the boys of Payatas displayed a performance guided by pride, brotherhood and teamwork. The Fair Play For All Foundation not only gave them a means to enter the integrated communtiy through friendly competition, they gave them a place for growth, education, happiness and a true family.

 

The Spirrs Team is a Proud Supporter of the Fair Play For All Foundation and Co-Directors Naomi Tomlinson and Roy Mooore. I had the great pleasure of meeting Naomi and Roy, along with broad member Jacques Palami, dedicated members of their volunteer team, and each one of the valued members of the Payatas FC U13 Team.

 

For more Information on the Fair Play For All Foundation please visit their Facebook page HERE. Please be sure to Click “LIKE” and share the link with with rest of your Soccer Pirrs.

 

For the latest updates on Naomi and Roy please visit their blogs for upcoming events, volunteer oppurtunities and ways to support the FFA.

Please be sure to Follow Me on Twitter @LextonMoy to keep undated with all that is going on with the Philippine Azkals, Kaya FC, and my experiences living in Manila and Traveling Asia!