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Niu Kick is the vehicle to drive  AFL in PNG

By JOEL PURI     |  SportsTok Magazine | Issue #89 JANUARY 2021

PNG AFL is an active code in terms of development programs in the country to identify and groom talents in a well-established and coordinated pathway with Queensland AFL, Australia.   Goal setting and planning ahead is the very fundamental of sustainable success for any organization and hence, PNG AFL future looks promising with the inception of PNG AFL NIU KICK Program that involves children aging from five to 15 years old.
The PNG AFL Em Nau Niu Kick program is a talent development pathway for PNG kids who are passionate about this code and who are willing to involve in this sport. It is proudly sponsored by Paradise Beverages to extend the opportunity throughout every kids in PNG who are interested in Aussie Rules. There are several centers in the country that are rolling out this program at the moment and they are; Kimbe, New Ireland, Kokopo, Mt Hagen, Lae and Port Moresby for Southern Region.
The Niu Kick Program Coordinator Southern Region David Topeni said, this program bestows the under 14 and 16 talents with necessary techniques and skills through mini competitions that leads them to Australia for selection trials and be scouted by Australia AFL clubs. “We have been going around to selected schools for almost four months and now we are concentrating on the POM International Schools, Larsen Technical College and some other elementary and primary schools in NCD,” he said.
On the other hand, due to Covid-19 the squad training and competition for youth development for the year has been on hold.
This is not about how skillful a kid is but it’s about the right attitude and approach towards a fellow kid and the code that matters.
“We don’t see how skillful they are but we see them on how they discipline themselves and respect themselves as a girl and boy,” he said. While talking about AFL and football they also encourage them about healthy lifestyle on how a child should understand lifestyle as growing up to an adult. After teaching them the basic skills of football, we encourage them to eat healthy food to live a healthy lifestyle,” he said.



David said, this game was intentionally done to bring out the children to the field during weekends. Because sometimes when they are at home they do nothing at home, but unhealthy things. Thus, NIU KICK Program is a platform created for them to come around during the weekends to have fun, create new friends to mingle with and also bring along their parents so they could spend some quality time with their kids at the field within this 2-3 hours program.
“When we go into the communities we engage Tribal Foundation and youths to carry out awareness on sorcery, gender based violence, domestic violence and things that are affecting the societies,” he said.
The program that Tribal Foundation involves is called ‘Senisim Pasin Program’ “Pilai Blo Senis” where youths have fun games to share about the things that affects the community and household after the game.
“Most people are affected by sorcery, GBV and other violence so that’s why we advocate through sports,” he said.
PNG AFL NIU KICK Program thank the platinum sponsor Paradise Foods for the continuous support for more than four years. Though Covid-19 affected the program yet observing the protocols is the way forward.

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