A SUM of $66,458 has collected, by way of financial contributions, from the Football For A Cause charity football match, which took place at the Hasely Crawford Stadium, Mucurapo on October 26.
A number of past national footballers, as well as national players from various sporting disciplines, were openly supportive of the venture, which saw fans either donating cash or items to persons affected by the nationwide October 19 floods.
However, there was a poor turn-out on the evening, with an estimated 2,000 persons witnessing Team Hope defeat Team Relief 2-1.
In a media release, the organisers, Dennis Lawrence and Friends, revealed the cash donations gathered at the gates, as well as relief items - toiletry items (1500), cases of water (110), cleaning agents (200), food items (3,000) and clothes.
"Through use of cash collected from the event, appliances will be purchased and distributed to homes in the affected areas," the media release said. "The organisers of Football For a Cause collaborated with ITNAC Trinidad for the distribution of the items on October 27 in several of the affected areas including Greenvale, Congo, Sangre Grande, Ascot, Kelly Village, Couva, Las Lomas, Warrenville, Oropune, El Socorro and Tobago."
Some of the ex-national footballers who featured in the charity match spoke about their experiences...
Stern John – “It was good. It was really organised properly. We tried to plug it as much as we can with the media. But I think it could have been a better turnout, to be quite frank. I think it was for a good cause and to help the people who were struggling with the floods. If I had to be a bit critical, the turnout was a bit disappointing. Nevertheless, the ones who came out and support, we have to thank them.
Arnold Dwarika – “It was nice. It was for a cause but, all and all, it was enjoyable. I’m sorry that we have to come together to play in this crisis. It was all for a cause. It was a bit disappointing with the turnout. On the field, and the camaraderie that we had, it was a good effort with the boys. I applaud them for that."
Gary Glasgow – “The turnout was not what we wanted but the end-result, I think, was positive. The goal is what we set out for, and its what we achieved. The camaraderie, and the stuff that we got from people. It’s always nice to be back with the boys. (There are) men who you haven’t seen for a bit. It’s always nice to come together and hang with the guys."
Kenwyne Jones – “(I'm) happy to see the players that turned out, a lot of past national footballers, the cricketers, the netballers, all the hockey players, the Commissioner of Police (Gary Griffith), it was great to see them. It was good to play against people who I grew up watching and actually played with, on the national team. The game itself went off really well. The entertainers they had (were) really well. But we were probably expecting a little bit more from the public, with the turn-out. Hopefully, with things coming up in the future, we could be able to raise awareness."
Kerry Jamerson – “I think the event was very much organised, at a short notice. (It) was very nice to see a lot of sporting bodies (come) out and support the event, and the cause. It was a good gesture (from) Dennis Lawrence to come up with that so quickly. I thought it should have had more people supporting the cause. Anything like that, once they ask, we will come forward."
Russell Latapy – “I thought it was a fantastic effort from all my ex-teammates and the sports personalities, and people that I admire. I have to say one thing that I was disappointed with was the turn-out of the crowd. I thought that, as Trinbagonians, we are there to support each other and we had a disaster a few days ago. This (event was organised) in a short space of time. The fans who were there created a good atmosphere so it was really a fantastic (evening) and, most importantly, for a great cause."
Video - SPORT: Football For A Cause