(MENAFN - Muscat Daily) Senior representatives from the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Sports and the Oman Football Association joined members of Shell Oman's senior leadership team and FC Barcelona Foundation this week to celebrate the culmination of the highly successful first phase of the youth football program FutbolNet. Festivals were held in Sohar, Bediya, and Muscat between November 29 and December 7.
The festival also saw the participation Oman's Barka and Fanja regions. Since the kick-off in May this year at the Seeb Stadium, Futbol- Net has attracted over 1,000 children between the ages of 8 and 16 who participated in the biweekly training sessions held at ten locations around Oman. This week the FutbolNet festivals attracted hundreds of Omani youngsters and their families along with program coaches, administrators and supporters to celebrate.
These festivals also highlighted the core values and benefits of FutbolNet: commitment, respect, tolerance, teamwork, responsibility and effort. Participants at each of the festivals events undertook a series of activities each targeting a specific FutbolNet value. FC Barcelona Foundation vice-president Ramon Pont said, ''We are pleased to be celebrating the success of the first phase of our FutbolNet Programme in Oman with our partner, Shell.
The turnout of students, coaches and administrators from schools around the country is a testament to Oman's dedication to youth development and to the success of our program, which became their programme. The youth of Oman have had the opportunity to advance their skills in the sport, while also reinforcing values that are key to leading successful lives.''
''The FutbolNet program reflects Shell's ongoing commitment to the development of the Omani youth and to the Omani communities that we have been so proud to be a part of for many decades. The success of the program relies on the partnership and support of FC Barcelona, the Omani Ministries of Sports and Education and the Omani Futbol Association and all Omani Youth.
We have also received unprecedented support from the education sector and community throughout the programme'' said Shell Development Oman Country Chairman John Blascos. Not a football training academy as such, rather the program provides young Omanis with an extra-curricular learning platform that is safe, fun and easily accessible. Youth learn life skills through the medium of football as they hone their leadership and teamwork skills in an age-appropriate child-centric learning environment.
The need to safeguard the health and well-being of students and coaches at all times during FutbolNet sessions is a top priority and all FutbolNet activities are underpinned by the core principle of safety first, safety always'. FutbolNet is part of Shell's on-going social investment programmes in the sultanate. Shell is committed to supporting the government and the people of Oman through sustainable social investment initiatives, which are driven by a desire to give back to the country that has been an integral part of the Group's success over the years.
Shell has been active in Oman since 1937 with business activities ranging from managing relationships with key stakeholders and associated ventures in the sultanate to research, learning & development and managing and executing extensive social investment programs that contribute to the sustainable development of the country