For hundreds of underprivileged local boys and girls aspiring to play tennis, a foundation to help them pursue their passion will soon become a reality. The newly designated Goodwill Ambassador of the Tennis Federation of Cambodia, Indian star Leander Paes, is joining forces with TFC Secretary General Tep Rithivit and Treasurer Chris Forsinetti as founder members of the proposed Grassroots Tennis Opportunities Foundation.
“The main thrust behind the initiative is to take tennis to the financially challenged,” said Tep Rithivit. “We want to dispel notions that tennis is an elite sport and catered only to the fortunate ones.
“Our aim is to create sustainable opportunities for the country’s boys and girls through sport and education. Our focus will be on villages and towns of underdeveloped provinces, creating tennis courts and strategic training centres in those places.”
The foundation will enlist the support of tennis stars who would love to give something back to communities, especially in third world countries. It will also solicit backing from high profile companies who wish to realise corporate social responsibilities in the Kingdom.
“Programmes of the Professional Tennis Registry – a simplified mode of coaching courses worldwide – will be diligently introduced for training tennis teachers and coaches and, as you can clearly see, this foundation will not only boost grassroots promotion but will also help create more jobs for future tennis coaches,” added Tep Rithivit.