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Floorball Seminar in Laos – 21.10.2015

Floorball made its first ever appearance in Laos, during the weekend of 17th to 18th October, when the IFF together with the Laos Provincial Education Office and the Finnish NGO Fida International, organised a Floorball Development Seminar in Savannakhet.

The initiative for the seminar came from the Finnish Development worker Ms. Päivi Jokivuori, who is presently working with a Youth involvement project for Fida International in Savannakhet.

- We are working a lot with local youth and thought that Floorball would suit the Lao people very well. I presented the idea to the Regional Educational office, which took on the task to organise the seminar, Ms. Jokivuori informed.

The seminar was organised in the Savannakhet Indoor Stadium sports hall in the provincial capital Savannakhet with some 25 participants from a total of 7 schools (5 from the city and 2 from the countryside). In addition, the Educational office had sent a number of persons responsible for physical education to evaluate the suitability of the sport for Laos.

Based on the comments IFF received from the Deputy Director of the Educational Office Mr. Thavone Ingsisiangmai, who participated in the seminar on Sunday, it seems that floorball can become very popular for Lao people. During his closing speech, Mr. Ingsisiangmai urged the participants to start the sport in schools and invited IFF to come back next year to see how the schools have performed.

He was very pleased with the support IFF provided in the form of sticks and balls to the participating schools.

- It was very interesting to see how fast the teachers could adopt to a sport they had never seen before and how enthusiastic they were to play floorball. We look forward to start the development of the sport in our region, said Ms. Bounphama Thammavong, who was responsible for the local organisation from the Educational Office.

Päivi Jokivuori (2nd from left), IFF Secretary General (in black) & Thavone Ingsisiangmai (2nd from right)

- We will continue working with the Educational office and start the discussions of the coming South-East Asian Games with them, as Laos is one of the SEA Games countries and this could be a great opportunity for the Lao people here in Savannakhet. We will also work together with the IFF, to try to establish a Lao Floorball Federation in the future and will try to participate as observers in the World Floorball Championships Qualifications, which are to be played in Pattaya, Thailand in beginning of February 2016, the very satisfied organiser of the seminar Ms. Päivi Jokivuori, concludes.

Photos By: Päivi Jokivuori