Kigali, 28th November 2021. Paris Saint-Germain in conjunction withVisit Rwanda have inaugurated a brand-new PSG Academy in Rwanda with Paris Saint-Germain legend, Rai. Located in the Huye district, in the Southern Province, the academy will give 172 young hopefuls the opportunity to fulfil their potential in top-class sporting facilities with coaches specially trained by the club.
The flagship programme of the partnership between Paris Saint-Germain and Visit Rwanda, the PSG Academy in Huye is completely free and has the mission of training future talents and encouraging Rwandan youngsters to play football.
This season, 172 children – boys and girls aged between 6 and 16, who were selected during scouting sessions attended by 2,000 children – are taking part in the academy’s project. For one season, these youngsters will have the opportunity to train in a Rwandan first-division stadium. The training sessions will be led by local staff trained by the club and are designed by the club’s Technical Director according to each child’s skill level and in keeping with the Paris Saint-Germain style of play.
Every year, around 500 additional children will be invited to take part in courses or one-off events organised on the site, in order to give them a taste of the Paris Saint-Germain experience.
During the inauguration, the children present were able to meet iconic footballer Rai and join him for a training session. The social media entertainer Boris Becker also got into the spirit of the day and enjoyed a kick-about with the young footballers.
“We welcome the contribution of the PSG academy in Rwanda to the country’s football development through professionalizing Rwandan players from a young age. The introduction of specialized training to Rwandan football technicians and coaches is an added advantage to Rwanda’s football development. The academy in Huye district will also improve the socio-economic situation of the local population. The Government of Rwanda is committed to continuing the development of this program so that it can reach its intended objective,” said Shema Maboko Didier, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Sports.
“We are delighted to open this new academy in Rwanda. This project, fruit of a long-term collaboration with our partner Visit Rwanda, is very important to us. It marks a new stage in the development of football in Rwanda and will make it easier for many young Rwandan players to access top-level apprenticeships. This academy also boosts the club’s presence in Africa,” announced Nadia Benmokhtar, Head of Brand Development at Paris Saint-Germain.
“The creation of this academy is very emotional for me as it echoes my own experience. At age 14, a professional football club gave me a chance after seeing me play in the street. At the time, there were no organisations like this! This academy gives many young people a fantastic opportunity to fulfil their potential. I am delighted to have met them and wish them great success for the future,” added Raí, former Paris Saint-Germain player, present at official opening.
The Rwanda Development Board (RDB) is a government agency in Rwanda with a vision to transform Rwanda into a dynamic global hub for business, investment, and innovation. Its mission is to fast-track economic development in Rwanda by enabling private sector growth. Learn more about the Rwanda Development Board www.rdb.rw
About Paris Saint-Germain:
Paris Saint-Germain football club was created in 1970 and celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2020. Ever since QSI purchased the club in 2011, Paris Saint-Germain has undergone a transformation to become one of the world’s top football clubs and global sports brands. The Club has won 27 trophies in just ten years, making it the most successful football club in France. Paris Saint-Germain has attracted many great players including Ronaldinho, Beckham, Ibrahimovic, and currently Messi, Neymar Jr and Mbappé, some of the best players in the world. The international popularity of the Club never stops growing. It is now the one of the most followed clubs in the world, expanding from zero to a community over 100 million social media followers in ten years. This pioneering Club – which includes men’s football, women’s football, handball and judo squads – made the ground-breaking move to incorporate an Esports team in 2016. Giving back to the community is fundamental to the Club, which has drastically increased the capacity of its Foundation to develop wide-reaching and efficient programmes to help underprivileged youngsters.
RDB: Doreen Ingabire – firstname.lastname@example.org.
PSG: Eva Duprat – email@example.com