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Jun 6, 2017

Women's Soccer Needs Women Coaches

Presenting the next generation of women coaches
Presenting the next generation of women coaches

Women’s soccer needs women coaches to flourish in Senegal. Until now, women’s soccer has been mostly coached and directed by men.  At Ladies’ Turn, we work with awesome women and we want them to lead! So we are partnering with British Council and the Premier League to train the next generation of female coaches. 

In January, Ladies’ Turn invited 36 women from 11 regions throughout Senegal- PE teachers, former soccer players, even former members of the National Women’s soccer team- to participate in a training to build their skills as women’s coaches from January 27-28 in Thies. At the end of the training, the participants returned to their communities and coach youth soccer teams and practice their new coaching skills.

“It’s a great initiative, going straight to the heart of developing women’s soccer in Senegal.” – Lala, PE teacher and former player who attended the training.

In May, Ladies’ Turn invited 24 participants back for another round of training from May 4-8. This time, half of the training focused on women’s leadership and social entrepreneurship. The participants designed their own micro projects to continue in their community and further hone their leadership skills. Ladies’ Turn and British Council will select the top projects to fund.

Thank you for all of your support and donations! We could not do it without you.

Nio far, in solidarity,

Jennifer and the Ladies’ Turn Team

Lala, PE Teacher and former player participates.
Lala, PE Teacher and former player participates.
Studying coaching strategy
Studying coaching strategy
Practicing drills to teach players.
Practicing drills to teach players.
Mar 10, 2017

Women's Soccer from All Angles in Festival Finale

Non-stop soccer
Non-stop soccer

With our festival in late November-early December 2016, we celebrated a lot of angles of women’s soccer. First and foremost, we played! 8 teams from throughout Senegal participated in a one-day non-stop tournament. Then we took an in depth look at the current state of women’s leadership in sports in Senegal. Finally, we all watched the Women’s Africa Cup of Nations Final in Yaoundé live on a big screen from Demba Diop Stadium in Dakar.

During the group phase of the non-stop tournament on December 2, 2016, Casa Sport looked like they would win the whole tournament. They had traveled the farthest of any of the teams- all the way from Casamance, the southern region of Senegal which lies south of The Gambia. Casa Sport dominated the group phase, emerging as the only undefeated team. However, in the semi-final, they lost in penalty kicks to the Dorades from Mbour, a city 45 miles south along the coast from Dakar. The Dorades however couldn’t keep up the momentum and lost to the Dakar powerhouse, the Médiours from the suburb area of Rufisque - again in penalty kicks! 

“This festival helps us stay motivated and love soccer because it’s not easy to be a girl and play soccer and love soccer,” shared Awa, captain of a women's team in Dakar.

Our Leadership Panel the following day (December 3) provided needed space for reflection after the excitement of the tournament. A leading Senegalese sociologist was joined by a former Minister of Insitutional Relations, the Canadian Ambassador, and our President Seyni in discussing the progress and challenges surrounding women’s leadership in sports in Senegal. We hope to have a video of it so any francophiles can practice their feminist French!

Finally, everyone gathered to cheer on the Cameroonian and Nigerian Women’s Teams as they played the Final of the Africa Cup of Nations in Yaoundé. Nigeria once again proved they are the African team to beat- winning 1-0. Gaelle, our Communications Director, was in attendance live in in Yaoundé for it all. Check out her video of the electric atmosphere in the packed stadium. For Ladies’ Turn, watching the final together was an important moment of solidarity with other women’s teams in Africa. Senegal would love to make the finals one day, but women’s soccer finals are victories for us all. 

A huge thank you for all your support that makes this possible!  Also a thank you to our partners at the Embassy of Canada in Dakar for their grant and their Ambassador’s dedication!

Nio Far, In Solidarity,

Jennifer and the Ladies' Turn Team

Panel on Women
Panel on Women's Leadership in Sports
Player asks a question at the panel on leadership
Player asks a question at the panel on leadership
Gaelle live at the Africa Cup of Nations Final
Gaelle live at the Africa Cup of Nations Final
Crowd cheers women players at Africa Cup Final
Crowd cheers women players at Africa Cup Final
Dec 6, 2016

Our 2016 Festival for Women's Soccer!

Yes!! Game Time 2016!

Ladies' Turn is in the midst of our 2016 Women's Soccer Festival in Dakar. We picked this time of the year on purpose- to coincide with the Women's Africa Cup of Nations, held in Cameroon. The 2016 Festival is our way of celebrating women’s soccer in Senegal and expressing solidarity with the national women’s teams throughout Africa. Seyni, our President and former Captain of the Senegalese National Women's Team, knows how important it is to promote women's soccer both locally in her own country and abroad.

To open the festival, we organized a qualifying round for eight Dakar teams on November 28th.  The Aigles de Médina, Sirénes de Grand Yoff, FC Océan, Ja Fass, Médiours de Rufisque, Union sportive des Parcelles Assainies, Amazone de Yeumbeul competed to advance to the festival’s main event: a non-stop tournament where they would meet 4 teams from other regions in Senegal. The Dakar teams played hard on a sandy field in the middle of Yoff village in Dakar. We try to organize some games in the middle of neighborhoods so people see women playing and can stop to cheer them on.

Congratulations to the Amazones de Yeumbeul, the Union sportive des Parcelles Assainies, the Médiours de Rufisque, and the Sirénes de Grand Yoff who won their matches and advanced to the main event!

Yesterday on December 2, we held the non-stop tournament, and as I write, Ladies’ Turn is holding a panel talk on women’s leadership in sports. Then we’re showing the Final of the Africa Cup of Nations live on a big screen and watching it all together. I’ll write more next week when I have all the photos and results from the last two days. For now, check out our photos below and the scores from the qualifying round.

A huge thank you for all your support this year. We also want to thank our local partner- the Canadian Embassy in Dakar for supporting this Festival.

Nio Far,

Jennifer and the Ladies’ Turn Team  

Qualifying Round Results (for those up on their women’s soccer teams in Dakar):

  • Amazones de Yeumbeul – FC Océan : 4-2 
  • Ja Fass – Union sportive des Parcelles Assainies (USPA): 3-4
  • Médiours de Rufisque – Aigles de Médina: 7-1
  • Amazones de Grand Yoff– Sirénes de Grand Yoff: Sirènes win by forfait

 

GOAL! Player from Parcelles Assainies celebrates!
GOAL! Player from Parcelles Assainies celebrates!
Seyni, Ladies
Seyni, Ladies' Turn President, at the games
JA Fass & Union Sportive Parcelles Assainies play
JA Fass & Union Sportive Parcelles Assainies play
Ja Fass Team
Ja Fass Team
Spectators surround the field to watch.
Spectators surround the field to watch.
 
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