ISF willing to bring five-a-side football world cup to Kingdom

Brazilian football star Ronaldinho, center, and Shahzaib Mehmood Trunkwala, VP, ISF, right, pose with a Pakistani flag in Karachi. (Photo/supplied)
Updated 18 September 2018
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ISF willing to bring five-a-side football world cup to Kingdom

Leisure Leagues (LL), the organizer of the first five-a-side football in Lisbon this year, says it will hold talks with Saudi sports authorities to bring the ISF (International Soccer Federation) world cup to the Kingdom next year.

Speaking to Arab News, Shahzaib Mehmood Trunkwala, vice president of ISF and president of the group that owns Leisure Leagues Pakistan (LLP), said: “The mega event will boost small-sided football in the Kingdom and South Asia through exchanging Saudi and foreign players onto different teams.”

Trunkwala said the forthcoming ISF world cup in Lisbon has won global attention as a large number of football fans are traveling to Portugal.

He said the Trunkwala family has been mentoring youth and promoting a healthier Pakistan for decades. The family plans to bring the Argentine football star Lionel Messi over next year.

“There have been talks between Leisure Leagues and Messi, and it is likely that Pakistani fans will see the world’s greatest star play here next year,” he said, adding that Messi has expressed his desire to bring two teams to play matches in Pakistan.

Last year, the LLP brought several international football players, including Brazilian star Ronaldinho and the Welsh ex-Manchester United ace Ryan Giggs to Pakistan.

The ISF organizes international small-sided football competitions for both national and club teams in the formats of five, six, seven and eight-a-side football.

Founded in 2017 by national operators of five and six-a-side football leagues across Europe and Asia, ISF brings together the expertise of the industry’s leaders to launch the most exciting international small-sided football tournaments in locations across the world.

Any national level organization which runs five, six, seven or eight-a-side football leagues is eligible to register to join the ISF and gain the license to run their national team. Once registered and approved, the licensee becomes the exclusive operator of their country’s national team and the only organization eligible to represent their country in ISF world or continental championships.

The first Socca6 World Cup will take place in 2018 and players wishing to play for their national team can apply online via the national team page for their country. Continental championships will take place from 2019.


Alef Education launches first project in US

From right, Geoffrey Alphonso, CEO of Alef Education; Geoffrey Canada, president of the Harlem Children’s Zone and chairman of NexGen Education; and Hanut Singh, CEO of NexGen Education and CEO of QBS Learning.
Updated 17 October 2018
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Alef Education launches first project in US

Alef Education, a UAE-based education technology company, has announced the launch of its Alef education system in the US.

The system will be used at Harlem Children’s Zone (HCZ) schools in New York city, starting Oct. 15.

The Alef education system brings together a blend of the latest technology and pedagogical approaches geared toward learners of today. A key component of the system is the “Alef Platform,” which has three main pillars: 

•A fun and easy-to-use digital learning environment 

•High-quality digital content developed to engage and stimulate learning with a blend of videos, interactivities and games. 

•Real time data provided within each lesson to truly enable educators to support personalized learning and identify student strengths and weaknesses. 

The partnership between Alef Education and the Harlem Children’s Zone schools started in 2017 when leaders of those organizations met. The meeting included a review of best practices in pedagogy, instructional design, the use of technology, and the best ways to identify difficult concepts and detect struggling students early using data. 

Alef Education identified NexGen, an education technology startup based in New York City, as its US-based partner to carry forward the implementation of the program at the Harlem Children’s Zone schools and other school systems across the US. 

Geoffrey Alphonso, chief executive of Alef Education, said: “As a leading education technology company, we want to play a significant role in the creation of the next generation of innovative individuals around the world, and continue to provide the latest innovations in artificial intelligence-based and technology-driven education solutions within a holistic education system.” 

He added: “The implementation of our innovative education system in the Harlem Children’s Zone schools in New York city speaks of a quantum leap in our long-term mission to leverage technology to provide students with the personalized education they need to succeed, while also empowering teachers with real-time, actionable data.” 

Geoffrey Canada, president of the Harlem Children’s Zone schools in New York and chairman of NexGen Education, named one of the world’s most influential people by Time magazine and as one of the 50 greatest leaders by Fortune magazine, said: “We are pleased to welcome Alef Education’s innovative education system into our schools in New York as of October 2018. Education systems across the world are witnessing unprecedented transformations and a transition to a more dynamic education based on new technologies. In this context, we have decided to adopt this program to further enrich the resources available to our students to ensure they have access to the best the digital education industry has to offer.”