May 21, 2004
SVGFF looking to ‘Gold Project’

The St. Vincent and the Grenadines Football Federation (SVGFF) is eyeing an administrative complex as its Gold Project.
Submission of this project by the national body to FIFA will be done in the upcoming months.
FIFA, football’s world governing body, allocates US$1.3 million to states like SVG to conduct a major project.{{more}}
Head of FIFA’s Gold Project and Football Assistance Programme (FAP), Urs Zenetti, was here recently and had a first-hand view of this country’s football operations. He also gave guidance on the project.
The Swiss-born Zenetti was en route to Grenada last month to a CONCACAF conference. He used his visit here to resolve outstanding matters with the Federation concerning this country’s FAP.
This country had its yearly allocations stalled due to poor accountability by the former executive led by Louis Daisley.
However, this matter was resolved last year, just after current President St. Claire Leacock was returned to office.
Since then the local body began receiving quarterly allocations.
Zenetti disclosed that he was satisfied with the progress the current football executive has made with recent funds from FIFA.
He said that FIFA is looking towards “new regulations and more transparency for the funds.
“We believe that countries were unaccustomed to having such money, that they did not know how to use it,” Zenetti stated.
He pointed out that the funds can be used for “infrastructure, equipment, competitions, and training programmes”.
From 1998, FIFA began dispersing US$1 million over a four-year period to its members. This was approved in 2002 and will continue to 2006 when the programme will be reviewed.
Leacock is pleased that this country can submit a Gold Project proposal.
“Some countries are on their second Gold Project, while we are on our first,” Leacock bemoaned.
He disclosed that a “home for football” was his Federation’s initial focus, but had to change due to “some stumbling blocks”, as an existing field earmarked seemed not to be ideal.
He said that finding a suitable site would have put the project above its budget.
Leacock revealed that the Federation would be provided with two fields as an interim measure, through an arrangement with the proprietors of the Richmond Vale Academy.
But he is adamant that football, with its mass support, needs a home.
The Federation has drafted a $90,000 proposal to use the Academy as a Centre of Excellence.
This, too, has the nod of approval from Zenetti.
Leacock, First Vice President Ian Sardine, and Acting General Secretary Earl Bennett left here last Monday for France to attend FIFA Centennial Congress.