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Dusit Thani Hua Hin ‘Pitch In’ to Help Footballing Kids in the Community

Dusit Thani Hua Hin has reached out into the local community to give the children of Cha-am and Hua Hin a rare opportunity to play out their footballing fantasies on grass.

As part of the hotel’s Corporate Social Responsibility initiative, over sixty potential stars of tomorrow have been taken under the Dusit Thani Hua Hin Football Academy’s wing and competed in the inaugural 2013/4 season of the Western Thailand Football Academy League (WTFAL) at Under 8, Under 10, Under 12, Under 14 and ‘Parents’ level.

Formerly known as Hua Hin Soi 94 Planet Academy, the team struggled to find a permanent home and adequate funding in an area where football pitches are mostly limited to expensive six-a-side arenas with artificial surfaces. With membership on the rise, it meant that the boys’ development was limited by often having to sit around patiently awaiting the chance to show off their skills during training sessions.

The problem was exacerbated when the club were invited to join the WTFAL. Though interest further soared, each away match meant long coach trips to venues in and around Bangkok and even home match days became tiring whole-day affairs with each game consisting of three 20-minute ‘halves’ to give everybody the opportunity to take to the field. Though parents dipped into their own pockets to fund the team, there was, for a time, the very real threat that the only kids’ team in Hua Hin playing competitive league football would have to withdraw.

Upon hearing of the problem some six months ago, Dusit Thani Hua Hin’s General Manager, Victor Sukseree, generously offered the use of the hotel’s three football pitches to the team’s head coach and driving force, experienced Ghanaian professional Francis Henyoh and his team of four Thai and International coaches. The generous offer was snapped up and the relationship between the hotel and team has gone from strength to strength, culminating in a grand end-of-season awards party in the hotel’s Napalai Ballroom followed by lunch at the extravagant Sunday Best buffet in The Restaurant.