Living City: Teaching discipline through football at Jalan Kukoh

On Thursday nights, Mr Irza Fauzan Suprapto coaches football at a street soccer court at Jalan Kukoh. Through his weekly sessions, Mr Irza hopes to inculcate discipline and help the children in their personal development.
Screengrab showing Mr Irza Fauzan Suprapto conducting a football training session at a street soccer court in Jalan Kukoh as part of the Catch Plus after-school programme.
Screengrab showing Mr Irza Fauzan Suprapto conducting a football training session at a street soccer court in Jalan Kukoh as part of the Catch Plus after-school programme.PHOTO: ST VIDEO

SINGAPORE - His day job involves organising events and conferences for companies.

But on Thursday nights, Mr Irza Fauzan Suprapto, 35, is a football coach at a street soccer court near Chin Swee Road.

For each session, Mr Irza puts about 20 children through various football drills before ending with a friendly match.

“The court is built at a very strategic location, in the middle of all these blocks in this estate,” said Mr Irza of the rooftop space above a multi-storey carpark in Jalan Kukoh.

“It’s an important focal point in this neighbourhood, and the kids spend most of their time in the area,” he added.

The participants, aged seven to 16, are mostly from lower-income families, living in the HDB blocks in Jalan Kukoh, and nearby estates such as Jalan Minyak and York Hill.

The football training is one of many initiatives by Catch Plus, an after-school programme run by the Kreta Ayer-Kim Seng Citizens’ Consultative Committee.

Other than football, Catch Plus also works with community partners such as Mendaki, Rotoract Club and Heartware Network to provide other programmes – including tuition and reading and literacy classes.

For Mr Irza, the one thing he hopes to inculcate in his young charges is discipline.

“I don’t know if any of the kids here will become a professional footballer in the future, but I hope that they walk away with a strong sense of discipline,” he said.

In this episode of Living City, Straits Times Video visits Jalan Kukoh.