Soccer players from different schools in KTC and surrounds received learning materials from the Dutch Friends of Stars in their Eyes Foundation on Friday July 29.
The foundation also held the Back to School Sisonke Street Soccer 5-a-side tournament to keep the children entertained.
Co-ordinator Xolani Sicamba said the project had great potential to produce all kinds of professionals, from soccer players to intellectuals.
He said he was happy that young people were involved in it and had the vision to rise about their socio-economic challenges.
“This is a great project to help children, especially those who are from disadvantaged areas. It has been proven that an idle mind is the devil’s playground.
“That should not happen with our children. We want to keep them busy with soccer but at the same time encourage them to go to school. That schools send their teams is a true indication that we are in the right direction,” he said, adding that the project was expected to continue for the next five years.
“As from now going forward, it will be done twice a year.
“We are looking at producing teachers, scientists and other (professionals). But I am also adamant that we will be able to produce at least a few professional soccer players.
“In the coming years we will invite the teams to scout talent here,” he said.
Nyanga resident and parent Nosipho Ntozini was also optimistic that the project would help reduce crime.
“In future it will lead to job creation and opportunities. Children are now playing instead of roaming the streets.
“But most importantly is the fact that they are empowered to further their education,” she said.
She was happy that the children had been provided with learning materials, which, she said, many families were not able to afford.
“I noticed there were no ladies in the tournament but I think that needs to change,” she added.
“Not only young boys are from the underprivileged homes but also girls. But I am really happy that something is done, especially in this place that is full of social ills,” she said.
In response, the organisers promised to do something for girls.