Happy 25th year to ERSFNA,
The Southeastern city of Atlanta will be the backdrop for the premier sporting event of Eritreans as the ERSFNA begins its activities during the July 4th weekend. In the sweltering heat of mid-July, a couple thousand Eritrean athletes, fans and others will convene in the city that started this gathering of Eritreans 25 years ago. For years this event has been the heart & soul of summertime fun for Eritreans. It served as place where sports, culture and friendship and love for country came together. Before Eritrea’s independence it served as a place where people came to promote the wishes and desires of the soon to be independent Eritrea. For more on the history of the event just visit the ERSFNA website. However I want to emphasize a few important points that can serve as a reminder to our youth and those who will continue the legacy of this organization.
In 1985 a few Eritreans got together to start a tournament of diaspora Eritreans in North America. The main cities that Eritreans settled in were no more than 5 and they all got together to start a tournament based on the game of soccer otherwise known as Football. What started out small grew into big by the time independence was achieved and close to 30 teams started to participate at the time. Thank you to all those pioneers who initiated an event that brings people together. Today the focus has been to trim down the adult teams and concentrate on the youth. In Atlanta there will be close to 26 youth teams and 18 adult teams based on the information on ERSFNA.com
My association with the ERSFNA began in 1993 when I started to play with Team Washington D.C and since then I have been an avid fan supporter and volunteer serving on the board for 5 years. I strongly urge young people to get involved in running this important gathering. If today’s youth would like to see another 25 years and beyond they must get involved and also help develop this important organization. Elections are taking place this year and each team must have strong representatives who have a desire to be leaders. Hopefully some visionaries and pioneers will create an organization that will take the organization to the next level.
Meanwhile participation of women should continue to be highly promoted. Basketball and track and field are always an added plus but most of all it is the unity, love and the spirit of competition that should bind us all together. It is also to be noted that teams from Europe have joined and will be joining the celebrations of the 25th year in Atlanta. May the best teams win in Atlanta and a happy 25th years anniversary to ERSFNA.
Mike Seium is a former Public Relations officer of ERSFNA. For more just click on