The Programme Archipels in French Polynesia has officially launched following a COVID-19 enforced delay of 12 months.
Stéphanie Spielmann, Fédération Tahitienne de Football (FTF) women’s football development manager, is in Nuku Hiva this week with her team, and FTF Technical Director Patrice Flaccadori, leading the first activity of the new programme.
In October last year, Spielmann explained the need to travel to the Marquesas Islands, more than 1,400 kilometres from the federation headquarters in Tahiti, to identify what opportunities would best suit the location in order encourage greater female participation in football.
“We need to provide opportunities for them to come and play,” she said.
Having established a strong development and competition structure for Tahiti and Moorea, Spielmann is expecting the Programme Archipels to have a similar impact on the remote Marqueses which encompasses Nuku Hiva, Hiva Oa, Ua Pou, Ua Huka, Fatu Hiva and Tahuata.
The goal of the programme is to assist local clubs to put in place development strategies specific to the unique characteristics of each island.
“It’s very important for us to offer specific support to each island because each one has its own strengths and difficulties,” Spielmann explained.
The 22 participants are spending two-and-a-half days together in the classroom, from the 27 to 30 October, with their learning culminating in a half-day festival for the children of Nuku Hiva.
Among those present for the launch of the Programme Archipels are FTF Executive Committee members John Tetohu and Etienne Kohumoetini, also President of the Ligue des Marquises, with the group being hosted by local club, Jeunesse Marquisienne.
All images credit: FTF/Mathilde Durney