|The City of Bridgetown team and its supporters after its victory last year at the Kensington Oval. (FP)|
The victorious City of Bridgetown football team was honoured last Saturday night at an awards dinner at Almond Bay in Hastings, Christ Church.
The Constituency Council for the City hosted the event which paid tribute to the members of the football team who successfully mastered the David Thompson Memorial Constituency Council Football Classic, which concluded in December last year.
Minister of Constituency Empowerment, Steve Blackett, who was present at the ceremony, congratulated the members of the team on winning the inaugural tournament.
The Minister said that the tournament had provided an opportunity for the players "to collaborate, to share experiences and to work together towards a common goal". He added that there was also an avenue for "self-expression" which the young men might not have had before.
"What I believe is really important here is that these social skills and experiences are readily transferable to other aspects of life and can be catalysts to improve the individual’s ability to succeed as a student, employee, entrepreneur, community member or social advocate," Minister Blackett affirmed.
He told the footballers that as a result of the tournament they were thrown into a position of "prominence", and cautioned them that as part of a winning team they were "being looked upon by younger children as role models and as heroes to be emulated.
"You must, therefore, be mindful that you have become part of that reflective mirror that society views itself in. The obligation to be model citizens has, therefore, been thrust upon you and I encourage you to live up to the high calling and expectation [to] which you have been propelled," the Minister advised.
Alluding to the success of the out-of-season tournament, Mr. Blackett disclosed that there had been numerous calls for it to be held again this year. He said that "active consideration [was] being given to hosting it not only as a fitting memorial to the late Prime Minister, but as a viable vehicle for social change and community building".
"This football tournament has provided an avenue through which transformative change can take place…We must be determined to make this national effort succeed…We must bring together the social sector, the health sector, the sports sector and the education sector to promote sports for all as a new multi-sectoral policy," the Social Care Minister stressed.