An experienced IBSA-accredited blind football ref travelled to Chile recently to conduct a three-day training seminar with local referees.
The seminar, conducted by Argentinean official Mariano Travaglino, was held in Santiago de Chile from Friday 29th to Sunday 31st and hosted and organised by the Blind Sport Federation of Chile (FENADDIVI) and the National Paralympic Commitee of Chile.
The organisations are working very closely to develop blind football in the country, with Chile hoping to host a major international tournament in the near future.
The seminars were divided in 4 parts: a five-hour theoretical session held at the Chilean Olimpic Training Centre, which was attended by more than 50 professional referees, and three hands-on sessions involving practice on a pitch in the facilities of a local football club.
Caption: Practical session on the pitch.
The practical sessions included instruction on pitch placement and an opportunity to go under the eyeshades to experience the sport first-hand from the point of view of the blind player. Then the budding blind football refs were given the chance to act as officials in Chilean National Blind Football League matches under the watchful eye of Travaglino.
At the end of the event Mr Emiliano Rios (president of the Blind Sport Federation of Chile), Mr Luis Vazquez (General Secretary of the federation and a member of the Chilean NPC), and Travaglino handed over certificates to the newly-qualified referees.
Caption: the new refs pose with their certificates of participation.