Traditionally many youths in villages have limited activities to be engaged in or to keep them busy, except for small scale farming which is mainly done between the months of November to March.
Unemployment under young people leads to frustrations that indulge them in harmful behaviours such as drug abuse, violence, criminal activities or illicit sexual behavior. The latter exposes them to HIV and AIDS.
In trying to overcome some of the problems the young people encounter, Eva Demaya Centre annually supports the organization of a sports league for the youths.
Two competitions, one for football and one for netball, were organized, to cover almost the whole area of Northern Malawi.
Currently the sport activities play an important role in many people’s life, for both young and old people in the communities participate.
The program for both football and netball target 4 zones in the catchment area of the Eva Demaya Centre, that is Bolero, Luviri, Mwazisi and the Hewe zone. Each zone has its own competition.
In recent years each zone had an average of 20 football teams and 10 netball teams participating in the competition.
Among these groups Eva Demaya Centre also delegates and supports a football and netball team with employees from the Centre.
For the smooth running of the activity a committee is installed in each zone to overlook the implementation of the league. The chairperson of each committee is a member of the main committee. From the Eva Demaya Centre some staff members are involved in the main committee.
To illustrate the big task of the organizing committee is the fact that with 20 teams each playing against each other team in two matches (home and guest), a total of 380 matches is needed.
Eva Demaya started implementing the sports activity since 2001. The program has several positive effects, which go way further than the sheer entertainment to those playing in or watching the games.
Sport activities can install a positive and constructive attitude in young people’s lives, because it helps the youths to stay active and occupied. The sport can be an trigger to personal development of the young people and forward them as new responsible and committed citizens in their community.
Sports has helped youths to have a more positive attitude towards their lives and it promotes a healthy living. Both aspects helps them to abstain from some risky behaviours such crime, alcohol and drug abuse and undesired sexual relations.
In some situations sports activity has created income opportunities for both young and adults in functions as coaches, umpires and referees. Some players with good skills are identified and offered employment in organisations in order to play for their teams.
As sport, and especially football is very well liked and appreciated many people get involved in the league. Every club has an active group of supporters which involves also the adults of the community, so the sports bring people together, mostly in good harmony.
The social activity that is inherent to the sport activity has helped to bring unity among members of the communities. It also brings new friendships or relationships between different communities, because the competition spreads a whole region.
The photo’s on this page show some moments in the final matches of the Luviri competition 2019. Read more about the sport competiton of 2019.