First steps FORWARD in Rwanda

  • FIFA President Gianni Infantino laid first stone at FERWAFA Hotel

  • Project will deliver income to be used for development projects

  • Hotel located next to FERWAFA’s offices and national stadium

FIFA President Gianni Infantino visited Rwanda in February, as the FIFA FORWARD Programme took its first steps in the country. The FIFA President laid a ceremonial stone at the construction site of a proposed hotel that will both ease future financial burden for the country’s football association (FERWAFA) and generate income to provide support with development projects in coming years.

"We are here for an ambitious project, a good project," FIFA President Infantino said. "It’s a project which FIFA also believes in and which we will monitor. It is an innovative project which, with good investment and proper management, will yield benefit to Rwandan football. FIFA will continue to support Rwanda in its plans to take the game to another level."

With the financing of the project split between funds from the FIFA FORWARD programme and FERWAFA’s own fundraising, the goal is for the facility to ease the cost on national teams during residential training camps and for the association to host visiting national sides. FERWAFA will also use the hotel, which is positioned adjacent to FERWAFA’s office and the Amahoro Stadium, for commercial purposes to generate income for development activities, including women’s football.

"I want to thank the leadership of FERWAFA President, Vincent Nzamwita for his commitment in developing the sport in Rwanda," FIFA President Infantino added. "I also thank President Paul Kagame, a staunch football fan who has shown his passion and love for the game."

"I thank you for accepting to support us," Vincent Nzamwita, FERWAFA president said, addressing the FIFA President. "Upon completion, the hotel will generate revenues to the federation which will in turn be invested in various areas such as youth development and women’s football."

The long term aim of this project, like all those associated with the FIFA FORWARD programme, is to help establish infrastructure and facilities that will boost the growth of the game and – as with the FERWAFA hotel – create long-lasting and sustainable ways of generating income for developing member associations.