CALI (Colombia) – Inter Campus coach Juri Monzani recounts recounts his recent trip to Colombia.

After the first day of the theoretical and practical refresher course, which took up four mornings of the week, we visited and played with the children from Inter Campus satellite Rozo, where Salvatores’ documentary was filmed.

The next day Asociaciòn Deportivo Cali hosted 400 kids for a party with interactive children’s games and folklore activities, which showed us just how good these Colombian kids are at singing and dancing. The children then invaded the swimming pool around midday. Later, while the youngest kids were having a siesta, Henry Pedrosa – who is in charge of the psycho-social area at our partner Crecer y Jugando – spoke to the parents and youngsters present about the importance of upbringing and the relationship between parents, children and coaches.

There were also moments touched with sadness, like when the mother of a young boy called Yerington, who took part in the Inter Campus programme in Villarica, spoke about losing her son just over a month ago in a guerilla attack.

The next morning we were back at work on the technical training course for local instructors, focusing on the 8-10 year age range, which saw great participation from all involved, especially during the demonstration for goalkeepers carried out by Sergio Maraia.

In the afternoon, we set off in Professor Heber’s 1987 Renault for the Inter Campus centre in André Sanin, to the North-East of Cali, where different training sessions were run contemporaneously with more than 40 kids aged 8-14 years old.

The course continued as planned with afternoon visits to the most varied Inter Campus centres. The one in Yumbo is located in the industrial zone on the outskirts of Cali, where air pollution is unfortunately the main cause of the inhabitants’ illnesses. We went there on International Women’s Day and ran a training session for 24 girls aged 11 to 14.

During our time in Cali we witnessed immense attention, passion and desire to take part in the Inter Campus method.

Another demonstration of this was when we visited San Antonio del los Cabelleros, an hour and a quarter’s drive from Cali: about 48 boys and girls between the ages of 8 and 14 trained on the large pitch of the school. The activity was rounded off with some Chumpus, a local drink made with maize and fruit that is drunk during the siesta.