Having been trying at various times since 1997 to get into either the Oceania Football Confederation (OCF) or FIFA, in May 2016 Kiribati Islands Football Association (KIFA) applied to join the Confederation of Independent Football Associations (CONIFA).And so Kiribati, representing Oceania, will join 15 other teams (who are not members of FIFA) in their own “World Cup”. This is due to be held in London between May 31st. and June 10th. 2018.
A recent addition to the KIFA administration is Jake Kewley who visited Tarawa in 2015. He is described as “Ambassador and International Manager of KIFA” and works from his home in UK. He is responsible for the arrangements to get the KIFA team to London next year and initially is looking for sources of funding to cover the costs of the party of 16 players plus 2-3 coaches/managers. The organisers will be supplying accommodation and food but each nation has to cover its travel (and other) costs. For KIFA these have been estimated to total £50,000. At least half this will be return airfares. It is hoped the team will be able to leave Tarawa on May 24th. which would give them four days to train and acclimatise in London.It is likely the team will leave London on June. 11th.
The other teams involved are:
Africa: Barawa, Matabeleland, and Kabylia.
Asia:Tibet, Tamil Felam, United Koreans of Japan, and Panjab.
Europe:Abkhasia, Padania, Northern Cyprus, Western Armenia, Ellan Vannin,
Febvidek, Szekely Land.
As you will see and note, the majority of these are not UN nations nor complete independent countries, both of which Kiribati are. Outcomes will be interesting. Once more details of draw, match dates, times and venues are known, they too will be published on the KTA site. It goes without saying that your support and hospitality will be welcomed. For more background plus an interview with Jake Kewley, please go to the CONIFA web-site/Oceania.
The British Museum will be hosting ‘Eye on Kiribati culture: an Object Journeys special event’ on Friday 25 August 2017, 18.00–20.15 at the Great Court and galleries.
The project supports community partners to research and explore museum collections and to work collaboratively with museum staff to produce displays, events and digital content in response to this investigation.
This event will present the new Kiribati object display in Room 24 and you can hear how it was developed in collaboration with the Kiribati community.
Please could you book your camping spots as soon as possible? It’s easy to do: just call 01252 370073 and you can do it over the phone. You can give a rough estimate of how many will be in your party – I did! When you book, please say you are with KTA.
They won’t let us pre-book an area of the field and the field will get booked up quickly, so you are advised to book as soon as possible. There may not be spaces if you leave it until the last minute and we would love to see you there! Jacqui has kindly offered to arrive early to secure our spot in the field.
Booking early ensures you get a place and keeps us all together.
If you have any difficulties with this, or questions about the site, please do ask and I will try and help you.
We are all really looking forward to the get together and to seeing all of your smiling faces.
Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology Director Professor Nicholas Thomas invites the KTA and its members to attend the opening of the The Island Warrior, an exhibition exploring the unique and extraordinary coconut fibre armour from Kiribati.
We are saddened to learn of the death of the former Beretitenti Teatao Teannaki.
It was during a previous visit to the UK that he’d encouraged the I Kiribati people here to form an association that was first the Mwanean Kiribati Association, now the Kiribati Tungaru Association. We mourn his loss, the first of our ex-Beretitenti to pass away.
Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family during this difficult time.
By Alice Toomer McAlpine (The Reporters Academy)Earlier this week, Kiribati’s John Ruka predicted that today would be the greatest day of his life, and today he confirmed that his prediction had come true. The track athlete ran the Men’s 100m at the Olympic Stadium this afternoon at the Rio 2016 Games, the very same day that he celebrated his 21st birthday.
Finishing today with a time of 11.65, 0.26 outside of his personal best set just last month at the Melanesian Championships in Suva, Fiji, John had this to say about his first ever Olympic experience:
“I’m so happy. The race was hard, because it’s my first time at the Olympics, but I’m so happy to be at the Olympics on my birthday.”
John also explained how different an experience running on an Olympic track is for him, compared to running back in Kiribati.
“Today the track felt different because in Kiribati we use the sand. We improvise – we make starting blocks from wood. It’s very different.”
Knowing how excited people back in Kiribati are to have an Olympic athlete representing them, John explained:
“My friends and family are so happy and so proud of me. And for my birthday, my family celebrated in Kiribati for me yesterday.”
The time difference between Rio and Kiribati meant that John is able to celebrate not one but two birthdays, as he turns 21 in each time zone.
As birthday wishes from those back home flooded John’s Facebook yesterday, so did the messages of support for John’s race – supporters back home even baked John a birthday cake decorated with the Olympic rings.
With one Olympic event and one birthday celebration completed in the past 24 hours, John can now celebrate his birthday here in Rio whilst looking back on what he has achieved as an Olympic athlete.