Cooperation between the MAs and government authorities is crucial for the success of the programme, including establishing a partnership structure as well as roles and responsibilities. Given the programme is designed for use in school settings, it is integral that the Ministry of Education (or equivalent) is involved. School-based programmes that are developed outside of the ministry require government approval to be implemented in schools. Along with providing permission and facilitating access to schools, this will ensure that ministry policies and codes of conduct (e.g. child safeguarding) are adhered to. In addition, the ministry will be integral in finding useful links with other programmes, training opportunities and ensuring the long-term sustainability of the programme.
Should programme developers seek to work in schools outside the public (government) system, other school governing bodies (e.g. religious groups or private schools) may need to be approached for permission as well.
In designing the programme at a national level, the following principles should be followed:
- Consultation with all stakeholders is vital in order to ensure that all points of view are considered, including the views of children/youth.
- The F4S programme will be based on a partnership between the National Member Association and National Government (Ministry of Education, Ministry of Sport, Ministry of Health etc.)
- National F4S programmes can be led by the National MA or Government – various scenarios are possible - but should be based on a memorandum of understanding between parties.
- Quality of the programme is important to keep learners engaged and to develop the game at all levels. Providing high-quality technical support to coach-educators is crucial in this regard.
- Equality in terms of access and opportunity is non-negotiable. The programme must be inclusive and ensure the participation of male and female coach-educators, boys and girls, children with disabilities and children from different ethnic and cultural backgrounds.
- The programme must address social responsibility and reach youth in disadvantaged areas, incorporating psychosocial support and referral linkages for learners and coach-educators.
The programme will be rolled out in a phased approach. This will include the launch of the programme in various regions at different points in time. This will include consultation, partnership building and training in relevant regions, after which programme delivery at a national level can commence. Implementation needs to be accompanied by regular programme monitoring and evaluation (M&E). The following stages may guide the implementation process:
- At a global launch event, information and promotional materials will be developed for outreach, partner mobilization and communication at regional and national levels
- Regional consultations will be held to introduce the F4S programme to national stakeholders
- Interested national stakeholders will form a national steering group and submit applications
- FIFA, in collaboration with UNESCO, will review each application and determine if the application is successful
- The national steering group will designate focal points and/or national training coordinators, main partners to be involved, modalities of cooperation, geographic priorities, selection of schools, distribution of footballs and other equipment, communication and outreach activities, reporting modalities etc.
- Regional workshops will be organized by FIFA, in collaboration with UNESCO, for national focal points and / or training coordinators
- Following the regional workshops, the national training coordinator will train national trainers
- National trainers will train selected coach-educators from relevant schools
- Trained coach-educators will utilise the mobile F4S application and deliver the programme
- Monitoring and evaluation will be carried out at all stages