WorldRemit and Arsenal launched the second edition of the Future Stars programme in August to recognise the valuable contributions that grassroots youth football coaches make to their communities by teaching the children they train life skills on and off the pitch. The organization is interested in making the next generation of football forward individuals. At the same time, WorldRemit hopes to raise money for the communities of their applicants. For the second edition, the organization announced that of the 20 coaches selected,16 of them are African, with 8 of these coaches being women.
Simon McManus, Head Coach at Arsenal Football Development said “The Future Stars programme is all about recognising youth coaches across Africa and the Americas who bring communities together and are changing lives through football. We are looking forward to celebrating them and welcoming the two winning coaches to train with us at the Emirates!”
After the selection of the 20 coaches, 8 will be cut out and will continue to be halved until the final two. Then WorldRemit will then sponsor two winners – one male and one female – to fly to London for a personalised training session with Arsenal Football Development coaches. The organization works on a non gender-biased system and believes that both men and women get an equal chance at this great opportunity.
Entries for Future Stars closed on 4 September, and the programme received over 1,400 entries from coaches from across Africa and the Americas. The coaches are screened by a panel of judges from both the Arsenal and WorldRemit board. The individuals are screened based on their level of commitment, impact and strength in the world of football.
This is the first time majority of the shortlisted coaches have been African: 5 from Nigeria, 4 from Kenya, 3 from Uganda, 2 from Zimbabwe and 2 from Ghana. The winners will be announced in October after voting via the WorldRemit website. We are hoping to see an African emerge in the top two and possibly witness more of them emerging in future editions.