The programme was introduced in 2001 to groom young boys and girls with a passion for football and athletics, and is open to all primary and secondary school-learners in the Karas Region.
Training sessions take place every Saturday morning during school terms at the Keetmanshoop Sports Stadium.
Speaking to Nampa on Monday, programme coordinator Gabriel Freyer said the initiative is being supported by the Karas Football Association and other partners.
“We use it as a platform to train the children, and give them a chance to show their talents so that they can be selected for the Karas Under-20 football team some day, and eventually the senior national football team,” Freyer said.
Eleven participating schools from Oranjemund, Keetmanshoop and Rosh Pinah compete against each other for the selection of the best football players.
They go up against each other in the different age groups from Under-9 to Under-17, until they reach the regional team.
Oranjemund, Keetmanshoop and Rosh Pinah are the only towns currently participating in this programme.
Also speaking to this agency, fellow coordinator Bennie Diergaardt said since the programme started, it has produced some of the best players who have gone on to be selected for the regional football team.
One such player is Warren Pofadder, the region’s Under-20 football team captain and one of the top goal-scorers at the 2012 The Namibian Newspaper Cup.
“We are planning to take the children to Windhoek and Swakopmund this year when finances allow. In June, we will take them to Oranjemund, and in August to Rosh Pinah to compete,” he noted.
The programme’s chairperson, Wolfgang Cloete, also said here that although the programme mostly focuses on football, it also trains children in high jump, javelin as well as long and middle-distance running.
The best athletes usually participate in the regional athletics’ event expected to take place in March.
“The zonal athletics’ event for the region’s high schools will start next weekend,” Cloete said.