Sat | Sep 22, 2018

Labour of love - Menzies, Donaldson giving back to women's programme

Published:Wednesday | August 29, 2018 | 12:00 AMMarc Stamp/Gleaner Writer
Head coach of Jamaica’s senior women’s team Hue Menzies (left) and assistant coach Lorne Donaldson in discussion after Jamaica’s 9-0 win over Antigua and Barbuda in the CONCACAF Caribbean Women’s World Cup Qualifier at the National Stadium on Saturday.

President of the Jamaica Football Federation (JFF), Michael Ricketts, confirmed that overseas-based coaches Hue Menzies and Lorne Donaldson, who are both involved in the national women's programme, are currently operating on a voluntary basis.

Head coach Menzies and his assistant Donaldson are currently in charge of the senior team that is participating in the CONCACAF Caribbean Women's World Cup Qualifiers at the National Stadium.

Hosts Jamaica and four other nations - Trinidad and Tobago, Cuba, Bermuda and Antigua and Barbuda are fighting for three spots to the CONCACAF final stage to be held in the United States of America in October.

Their impact has been felt with the Reggae Girlz dominating Antigua and Barbuda 9-0, before overpowering Bermuda 4-0 in their two games to date.

However, the pair is not currently being remunerated by the JFF.

"They are not getting paid by the JFF. I can tell you that much," said Ricketts. "The overseas-based coaches like Hue Menzies and Lorne Donaldson are no getting paid."

Ricketts did, however, note that local-based coach Andrew Price, who is also an assistant coach, has a separate arrangement with the federation.

"Mr Price's arrangement is different as he is a staff member," Ricketts shared.

Menzies told The Gleaner that himself and Donaldson both benefited through football so they are giving back by volunteering their services, even if he is hoping that another arrangement can be agreed on in the future.

"We want to help give back to the country because of what the country has done for us in football, so we volunteer our time," Menzies said.

"Obviously, we want to make JFF understand that eventually we will have to make better than a volunteer situation. We just started getting per diem. It cost us money every year but our airfare is covered by the JFF." he added. "It cost us money every year. We get like a per diem and that is recent, but we are not getting a salary."

Menzies also pointed out that they have been giving back in other ways to the local women's football fraternity.

"We have academies in America, we have Nike deals so we assist the kids; as many kids not only the national team but club teams as well," he concluded.

The Reggae Girlz will next face Trinidad and Tobago at 7:00 p.m. on Friday at the National Stadium.

marc.stamp@gleanerjm.com