Paris Saint-Germain have opened their first school as part of their ‘Red and Blue’ campaign run by the club’s foundation.
The school acts as a way of giving students additional schooling time after hours should they be falling behind, or not receiving regular attention during regular school hours. For the 64 students the school provides 120 extra hours onto the schooling year.
“Based on the fact that struggles at school take source before they become six, the school welcomes students of primary school age already in difficulty in their schooling, or at risk of falling into problems,” a club representative said (via Goal.com).
The main aim is to use sport as foundation to bring people together and help them develop themselves. The basics they’re taught are fair-play and respect for each other.
The building consists of a small wooden-based building, with a small sports complex around it; nothing that would tell you it’s a PSG-funded complex.
Christine Legal, the main directer of PSG’s foundation says that although the set-up is nothing massive, she still thinks her idea has been brought to life well. “It’s small but it’s very convivial.”
Under the Qatari owners, including Nasser Al-Khelaifi, the president, they made the decision to triple the investment into the PSG Foundation to €600,000. This allowed them to build upon their plans, including the ‘Red and Blue’ school.
“We have three aims,” Legal explained. “To give the children confidence, to teach them to read and write, and to make them enjoy participating in sport. As with any area of PSG, we have no right to fail, so we will do everything to help these children.”
PSG and France midfielder Blaise Matuidi has been involved in the project and believes the project is a good example being set by the club’s president.
“I think he’s a perfect symbol for the club, and he’s really nice.”
The six teachers present each day manage the children in two parts. The first is in a classroom and the second is outside.
In the school, the children learn about using sports other than football to have fun. Not only this, but they are taught about disabilities in sport and learning to respect people with disabilities; they do this by playing wheelchair basketball and blindfold football. This helps them to understand how difficult it can be.
The PSG foundation aim to have more schools by next year and is a prime example of how multinational companies can give back to the community.
Enda Coll, Pundit Arena
Hat tip: Goal.com