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The PFA attended the Jayden Smith memorial tournament

The PFA attended the Jayden Smith memorial tournament

The PFA and TackleAfrica attended the Jayden Smith memorial tournament organised by the charity partner Oasis.

Jayden was only 10 years-old when he was tragically shot dead on 26th January 2016, minutes after returning home from buying bread with his father.

He and his father were caught in a crossfire between two rival gangs in the neighbourhood and unfortunately Jayden later died in his mother’s arms in hospital.

In respect of Jayden’s life, OASIS has taken responsibility of the field where Jayden played his football and have committed to making this area a ‘safe space’ for youth to participate and enjoy sport and specifically football.

Coaching for Hope and the PFA donated a small financial contribution to the appeal OASIS made to renovate the space into a more child friendly, safe place to meet and play.

Founded in 2000, Oasis is a charity that focuses on the development and uplifting of underprivileged youth and adults, living in several of Cape Town’s most deprived townships, through football and other activities.

Clifford Martinus (Leader and Founder of Oasis) welcomed all participants/spectators and began the tournament with a minute applause in memory of Jayden’s life.

Leader and Founder of Oasis, Clifford Martinus and PFA Director of Corporate Social Responsibility, John Hudson.

PFA Director of Corporate Social Responsibility, John Hudson gave a speech on the power of education and how sport and football can bring together all members of the community. The killer was recently sentenced to two life terms in prison and Jayden’s father, who attended the event with his wife and their two other children, spoke to the young people about justice for Jayden and the importance to stay away from drugs and gangsterism.

Over 60 young children, under the age of 12, took part in the tournament with food and drinks provided for all participants and spectators. The PFA and TackeAfrica helped referee and organise the event and all staff wore a REFspect t-shirt in support of the DXTL (Don’t X the Line) annual awareness weekend. The message of REFspect is loud and clear, ‘No Referee No Game’.

Sadly, we were unable to present the eventual winners with their trophy as shortly after the tournament concluded, gang violence broke out in Parkwood and all children and staff were recommended to return home immediately. This reinforced the daily struggle the young people have in some of the most deprived areas in Cape Town.