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Last monday, the 13th of november took place the last session of the workshop 'Football to Remember,' succesfully organized by the Foundation of Players of FC Barcelona in a nursing home near Barcelona. The workshop counted on 5 former players as speakers: Francesc Bel, Javi Delgado, Jordi Gonzalvo, Dani Martínez and Esther Torrecilla. Ramon Alfonseda, president of the Players Association, and former player and board member Pere Valentí Mora have also participated in some of the sessions. Other contributors were Carme Nieto, former player and pioneer of FC Barcelona Femení, and Manel Tomàs, member of the Club's Documentation Centre.
The main goal of this workshop can be summed up with the organizers' leit motiv: "let me live alone but be always with me". All along 12 sessions, the participants have been involved in football related activities that have helped them improve their memory skills. The favourite activity by popular acclaim is the visit to Camp Nou and the Club's Museum, a day when the atendees had the oportunity to be on the stadium's grass. However, for Jordi Gonzalvo, workshop organizer, it is a project that goes "beyond football". It is a support for the elderly and a way for them to socialize. "Most of them are on their own and thanks to this workshop they have made friends inside the nursing home," Gonzalvo says.
On the last session, former Player Pere Valentí Mora was present to hand over personalized Barcelona retro jerseys to the participants. They also received medals as an acknowledgement of their progress throughout the workshop. The last day is always moving. "The organizers get just as emotional as the atendees, some of them were waiting an hour earlier for us every session, and on the last one they kept asking: is this already over?".
The Foundation of Players of FC Barcelona are pioneers in Catalonia and Spain in the making of this kind of projects, created together with the Spanish Federation of Associations of Veteran Footballers (FEAFV). The aim is to help in as many nursing homes as possible and help those senior citizens in need. "We have given them a new life," Gonzalvo claims.
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