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Football Festival Gets Message Across

The event was successful with about 80 children and some parents from around Rarotonga joining in the activities.
“We had a variety of activities amongst our fun rotational games to keep the children interested,” said project manager Michelle Paiti. “The participants had an exclusive opportunity to explore inside a mobile police unit and weave a star for hope and courage to end all violence.”
“End violence against women and children” being the key message at the festival, the participants contributed towards the “One Million Stars to End Violence” project.
Punanga Tauturu Inc. is the initiator of the project in the Cook Islands and took the festival as an opportunity to teach participants how to weave a star.
“It was a challenge of a different type for us all but it was an intriguing, fun and interesting experience for everyone,” Paiti said.
In completion a total of 85 stars were weaved during the half-hour session, by the children and coaches alike. These will contribute to the Cook Islands pledge of 10,000 stars to feature in an exhibition at the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games.
By the end of the festival the children responded well to key messages surrounding respect and treating others the way you want to be treated.
“Our Ambassadors for this End the Violence Campaign play a crucial part as role models and helping promote awareness of key messages. Two of our ambassadors took part in the festival, Miss Cook Islands Natalia Short and National Women’s Football Player Marissa Iroa.
We extend our appreciation to them both and all the Volunteers who made the days activities such fun for the children.”
Just Play would like to thank its local partners, including the Cook Islands Police and Punanga Tauturu Inc for supporting the festival event and continued support towards the ENDviolence campaign.
Just Play is a sport for development programme supported by Australian Aid, New Zealand Aid, FFA, the UEFA Foundation for Children and UNICEF.

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