The oceanic football federations are set to benefit from FIFA's PERFORMANCE programme, which has been unveiled in Oceania during a three-day seminar in Auckland this month.
After a two-year pilot phase, PERFORMANCE: the football management programme of FIFA will be rolled out across the Pacific from 2012-2014 and aims to help football's national governing bodies reach their maximum potential both on and off the field.
Representatives from OFC’s 11 Member Associations, including Presidents, General Secretaries and Technical Directors, gathered in Auckland, New Zealand, to learn more about FIFA's development programmes from a team of FIFA officials led by Thierry Regenass, FIFA Director of Member Associations and Development.
“A lot of planning has gone into this seminar and now we are delighted to be here,” said Regenass, one of five FIFA officials visiting from Zurich. “The PERFORMANCE programme has been carefully designed to help Member Associations go to that next level in terms of professionalism in managing the game.”
Regenass and his team explained how associations can apply for tailor-made projects in a variety of areas including marketing, communications, IT, club development, finance, management, social responsibility, event management and infrastructure. “This seminar gives us an opportunity to speak about the programme but also, more importantly, to listen to each Member Association and the unique set of challenges they face and jointly decide on the next steps regarding the programme’s implementation.”
With a Technical Directors' Workshop and grassroots festival held in conjunction with the seminar, OFC President David Chung believes the three days have been invaluable. “It is exciting to bring the OFC family together and spend time discussing the key elements of developing football across the region,” said Chung. “We extend a warm welcome to the FIFA team and look forward to working with them to ensure the outcomes will be of significant benefit to each Member Association.”
Frederic Guillemont has been appointed as FIFA Senior Manager for PERFORMANCE and has a wealth of knowledge about Oceania after working at OFC for eight years as Head of Finance and Deputy General Secretary. The French native says it will take commitment from the MAs to ensure the programme is successful.
“PERFORMANCE is not just a two-day workshop,” said Guillemont. “It is a two to three year partnership between FIFA and its member associations where a tailor-made strategy is jointly defined to achieve the member associations' goals and targets. FIFA will work hard to provide expertise, tools and investment to member associations to achieve together the best outcomes.”
Guillemont will work closely with FIFA Head of Development Programmes Cyril Loisel and FIFA Development Manager for Oceania Eva Pasquier, who also attended the seminar, while Auckland-based FIFA Development Officer Glenn Turner will act as the link between the world governing body and each association.
FIFA Technical Director Jean-Michel Bénézet was also on hand to talk more about the three pillars of FIFA's technical programme including grassroots, education and elite. “Flexibility is important,” said Bénézet. “There are different challenges for each country that might relate to geography, culture, climate, means of communication or levels of infrastructure. It is our job to work with each Member Association and in particular the Technical Directors, to design a programme that caters to their specific needs.”
PERFORMANCE: the football management programme of FIFA is one of several development programmes FIFA offers to its Member Associations, including Goal, the Financial Assistance Programme, Education and Technical Activities and other support such as material assistance. It will be implemented across Oceania beginning next year.