How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard. – Thomas Meeha.
Sometimes it’s hard to say goodbye to the person who taught you a lot, in the ways that you can never imagine, not to say you depend on someone so much, but when you feel all alone, left out in the dark, all you need is a helping hand, where then a person advises you, accept you on whoever you are, and guide you to achieve your goal as this marks the closing ceremony for the 3rd edition of Midnight Football programme.
“At first I don’t actually agree on the Midnight Football programme, I mean what can students learn from kicking balls, but it’s no harm on trying, where then I can see some changes in my son, where he tend to be more responsible, and wanted to be in charge where it’s a good thing because he can be a good role model for both of his younger siblings, looking at things now he is learning something rather than hanging out and wasting time, it’s indeed a good programme, thank you midnight football,” Encik Radzi father to Fauzan, participant of Midnight Football.
It’s not about the praises we are looking for, or to seek attention, but it’s about the end product where to build a positive minded teenager, to achieve their goals and dreams. The event had a positive responds as parents of all participants joined together with community of Dang Wangi which then made the event successful, as they participated the mini activities organized by the coaches which actually was a positive feedback, where the willingness to spend time with their kids despite their busy routine.
The event was officiated by Puan Suraya Bt Wen, Director of Social Cohesion and National Integration (PMIN) where in her speech she express her gratitude being a partner in midnight football, “I would like to thank Global Peace Festival Malaysia for taking the first step in making this program a huge success, and of course not to forget the sponsors and support from others. From the past programs we can see the changes in students, their discipline where they learn to respect people, besides that more responsible in the sense of taking charge and working in a group. This is the kind of positive outcomes we wanted to see, a round of applause goes to the coaches who guided and instill good values in them.”
The activity then went well as scheduled, participants played their best to win the game, and the losing team took their lost as something positive and eventually supported other teams to do their best. “Seeing the kids before and now is totally different. Some were rude at first, they just do their thing and leave, but now it’s not about the game anymore, it’s something beyond that, the togetherness, teamwork, respect each other, accept critics well and ready to improve, being a father of 3 child this is a learning process for me as well, because my children may face the same problem too. I would like to thank Midnight Football for this opportunity and I hope this would continue next year so that we can build a healthy minded teenagers,” head coach of Midnight Football coach Ishak.
The champion for the competition goes to team faith for the boys group and as for the girls is inspire. Medals were given for the role model category which is won by Azrul Izlan Bin Ruslan for the boy’s category and Nurul Azierah Bt. Mustapa for the girl’s category. This event wouldn’t be a success without the help from Figos, Midnight Football sponsor as they sponsored most of the main futsal equipment, which consist of the ball, futsal shoes, jersey, and shoe bags. All the teams played thetir best to win the competition, and took positive remarks on their lost.
“We just don’t want to see results, and have you guys as our experiments. Not focusing on attention but instead we want to engage on your future undertaking, this is not just an 8 months program, we want to know what you guys are doing after school, share us your problems, we are here to help,” said Dr Teh Su Thye, Chief Executive Officer of Global Peace Festival Malaysia.
The event then continued with sharing moments where Midnight Football participants were given a chance to actually evaluate the program and share their experience, “previously when we joined this program we don’t actually mingle much with other students, those problematic students most of the time we just keep a distance but looking at today, regardless different ethnic is never a problem, we are now like a family and everyone here is special in something, thanks to Midnight Football for the opportunity and guidance,” Iqbal Idris Midnight Football participant.
To add on, a single mother shared her experience seeing the changes in her son, “Ever since my husband died due to medical issue, I can finally see my son laughing and talking to others, before that he won’t talk much and he often hides behind the camera when there is a photo taking session, it’s good to see him changing in a positive way, I’m thankful to god for such a program organized and I would like to express my gratitude to Ms. Alice Cornwell for the care and attention she put in, my son shares a lot about what she said, I’m sure with my son’s direction now, he won’t mix with the wrong companies and thank you again,” Patmani a/p Velloo, mother to Naagiran a/l Krishnan, participant from Midnight Football.
This program may seem simple to handle, and have the slightest impact of a teenagers future undertakings but as the saying goes “a thousand miles journey starts with one step” where then by imputing all the positive thoughts, kids might have different perception on how their lives going to be. They are not as fortunate as other students out there, but at least with those encouragements and guidance they won’t give up and keep on chasing their dreams regardless how many times they fail. Everyone deserve the same equal rights and not meant to be left behind once there is a problem, and start pointing hands on organization that are suppose to help, but instead be the first to grab their hand and say “you are special, and let’s do this together”, which actually will help them a lot and change their mindset, because they are young and easy to be influenced with wrong companies.