ISSA targets increased sponsorship for girls' football

Friday, June 22, 2018

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With sponsorship for their various products, particularly for schoolgirl football, proving hard to come by at times, president of ISSA Walton Small says the schools' sporting body is employing a new strategy that will aid the association in future endeavours.

Small pointed out that his organisation is currently in dialogue with a partner that is expected to assist ISSA in gaining sponsorship by means of selling their various products as a package.

“We recognise that there is a difficulty in garnering sponsorship for schoolgirl football and so we are grateful for Locker-room coming on board.

“However, what we are trying to do at ISSA is to look at football on a whole and sell it as a package to potential sponsors as ISSA football. So it includes Under-14, Under-16, Under-19 and girls' football.

“We understand, too that where the sponsorship falls short, we had to divert money from our Boys' and Girls' Championships to fund that particular competition because we are aware that it is getting difficult to get the sponsorship money,” he told the Jamaica Observer at the schoolgirl football awards function at the Jamaica Football Federation (JFF) offices on Wednesday.

Though reluctant to reveal ISSA's associates, Small expressed optimism that the approach will increase school group's sponsorship revenue, particularly for schoolgirl football.

“We are without doubt optimistic that it will improve because we have associated ourselves with a partner who is going to put the packaging to the various products at ISSA to make it more appealing to the sponsors.

“I won't say who it is at this time, but we have gone to the private sector and aligned ourselves with a partner, who will assist us in that regard. It is a partner who we will name at the start of the football season and one who I am sure will give us an opportunity to garner some sponsorship,” Small noted.

Small, in pointing to the significance of maintaining the schoolgirl football product, also referenced the increase in scholarship recipients coming out of the competition over the years.

Nine players from this year's tournament are set to benefit from such scholarship to universities in the United States.

National representatives Rachel Walters, Gabrielle Gayle, Peterkaye Green, Rena Gordon, Tatyana Pitter and Brittney Thompson are among the recipients.

“We have stressed to the girls that it is easier for them to garner scholarships than for the males, because for every one scholarship to a boy, there are 10 for the girls,” said Small.

Meanwhile, David Shirley, chairman of Locker-room Sports, gave his commitment to assist in keeping the competition afloat.

“I know that ISSA has made a lot of effort to ensure that girls' football continues to play because there are times when the sponsorship is just not coming and the competition is in doubt. But one thing I can tell you is that Locker-room is always committed to the cause,” Shirley declared.

— Sherdon Cowan

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