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Boys' Football Tournament

14 October 2012

Sport offers a platform for community cohesion and there was a fantastic attendance at the Henry Guterman Sports Centre in Heald Green to prove this. We organised a football tournament for 60 boys, ages ranging from 8-16, from both north and south Manchester. The aim was to recruit boys from both communities to play together in mixed teams and have fun. This was certainly achieved.

The Jewish boys were recruited by Sarah Kemp, the committee member who organised this event, whilst our co-chair Cllr Afzal Khan CBE arranged for boys to attend from the Abraham Moss Warriors and the Al Hillal Youth Club to join in the fun. Cllr Rabnawaz Akbar brought players from “Youth on Solid Ground” and Sajjad Amin also brought along many young Muslim players.

The spectators included Mark Guterman whose father the late Henry Guterman MBE was an interfaith activist who founded the Muslim Jewish Forum along with Cllr Afzal Khan in 2005 so it was considered fitting to hold this tournament in the Centre which bears his name. The Deputy Lord Mayor of Manchester, Cllr Naeem Hassan, was also in attendance.

Cllr Afzal Khan, Co-Chair of the Forum, stated, “It was wonderful to see so many young people come together enjoying playing football. Everyone seemed to be having fun, including the parents! We hope to organise an even bigger tournament next year.”

Cllr Rabnawaz Akbar stated, “The event is a continuation of the hard work of the Muslim Jewish Forum which builds bridges across both communities. Today was an opportunity for young Muslim and Jewish boys to come together to celebrate and promote the positive inter faith relations between the two communities.”

Heather Fletcher, Secretary of the Forum, stated, “It was a perfect, sunny afternoon, superb playing conditions and I think that Henry was looking down on us all at his Centre, hopefully  proud of us.”

Jonny Wineberg, Co-Chair of the Forum, stated, “What Sarah and her colleagues have achieved is truly wonderful. Our thanks also go to Jonny Davis and his team at the Henry Guterman centre and all the parents who volunteered their time. The event taking place at this Centre was a great tribute to Henry’s memory.”

Pictured below are some of the boys along with Afzal Khan on the left of the picture.

Picture from Boys Footbal Tournament

 

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Established to develop the cultural and social ties between the Muslim and Jewish Communities of Greater Manchester

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