Story Courtesy: www.concacaf.com
ST, JOHN’S, Antigua & Barbuda – Transporting the elderly and disabled through New York City is Lesroy Theodore’s day job. It is one in which he takes great pride. If you ask him where his true passion lies, though, he is quick to respond, “Football is my passion.”
Football is so much his passion that Theodore journeyed from New York to his native Antigua & Barbuda for the CONCACAF “D” License coaching course conducted at the Antigua Recreation Ground, May 8-11.
“I found out about it from my son (who lives in Antigua),” Theodore told CONCACAF.com. “He got the news and I thought it was very important for my development.”
So Theodore packed his bags and paid his way home to be part of the initiative that is designed to provide coaches with a valuable, internationally-accredited license for those working with youth.
“The CONCACAF course is very educational,” Theodore said. “I have a lot to gain from doing this course, tons of things I didn’t know before that I am learning here now. Learning how to deal with kids from 6-12 is very important and assists us junior coaches.”
More than a decade ago, Theodore attended another CONCACAF-related course in Antigua, before immigrating to the United States in 2001.
In the “Big Apple,” he has been the assistant coach of the John F. Kennedy High School girls team and, previously, at Mott Haven Community High School in the Bronx, but lamented the lack of opportunity to further his coaching education.
“In Harlem, we don’t have these programs,” Theodore noted. “It is very costly to get a certification and courses aren’t close in proximity.
“In the long run, this will pay off and lots of kids will benefit.”
Theodore has his pulse on the game in New York’s inner city — principally Harlem — where he resides and where, according to him, youth participation in football is growing steadily.
“Soccer is getting big in Harlem especially with African Americans, Hispanics and those of Caribbean heritage,” he asserted. “The parents are very involved, which is good and kids are realizing soccer is an avenue for them to get an education.”
He thanked the Antigua & Barbuda Football Association for accepting his request to participate, especially after sharing his plans of giving back to the local game in the near future.
“The ABFA knows I am genuine and loyal and will definitely give back to the country when I am finished,” stressed Theodore.
Until then, he plans to keep his passions fuelled, either by assisting the less fortunate on his bus or on the football field.