Former semi-professional footballer Deon Flowers has been the mastermind of the Third World Youth Program based in Lake Independence for the past 16 years. But for much of that time, according to him, it has been a struggle obtaining financial assistance to keep the program going. He is determined that this year will be different. We spoke to him today and he issued a passionate plea for the love of the game.
Deon Flowers – Coordinator, Third World Camp“They don’t know what the kids are going through. They don’t want to push family things into them so the kids are going through a lot too. They want to know how the kids respect me from bad areas, from good areas. We don’t have anyone that is bad… no body that’s in gangs. We have people that are frustrated. This is the thing that I always say, we don’t have any gangs we have people that are frustrated. People don’t know what is a gang. We are just frustrated and if we are not fixing it starting from here, it will continue and continue. We have to help out the people that needs it because you will die and leave everything. The only thing that God wants is love. 16 years I am fighting the love but I can’t do it by myself. I need support, I need help. If they want promotion, I don’t worry about promotion. You all can snap pictures or whatever. My promotion is if you help me out and the kids get it. Let the kids say that I ate this from Dion , I ate this from this, I got this and I got that. Let them deal with the promotion. I don’t have a problem if you stick up your banners or whatever. I don’t worry about that. 16 years and I don’t worry about the fame. I worry about the benefit of the kids. That’s my cry, the benefit of the kids and support that I am begging to get.”
Flowers thanked some of his regular supporters, including Minister of Education, Youth and Sports Patrick Faber, who last week announced that some Petrocaribe funds would be made available for summer camps like Flowers’.
“The program is one whereby every year, for 16 years, still going through hell and frustration. Jordan, Yellow and I, we sat down to talk and said we have done some mad work on the ground. And it’s sick that to business people, we are people who are calm and cool. From the time we arrived there they had already known that its good things going on because we deal with kids for over 16 years. We aren’t getting the real support. we have a few which we have to give respect to like Patrick Faber who sees the good work we do, Joseph and Taylor, SMART, KREM – Mose, I have to give him a shout out all the time because if it wasn’t for him, when I stress out he says ‘keep it up your doing a good job, keep on fighting’. It’s them who make me strong. It was a great thing when he said ‘don’t worry about all the vanity and those things, worry about the work, respect and love. When you’re gone you leave everything behind and that’s all you carry with you. Respect and love’.”
The program is scheduled to begin on the first Monday in June and run for one month.