It has been an exciting past three months for the team at Girls & Football SA, and we closed the quarter with an amazing tournament held on August 9th, 2013, South Africa’s National Women’s Day. This mini-tournament had two important aspects to it; primarily, we took a moment to reflect on the challenges and achievements regarding gender equality in South Africa since the march held by 20,000 women in 1956. The roots of the celebration are found in 1956, when 20 000 women marched in Pretoria to petition against a further strengthening of the pass laws.
The march was regarded as an expression of courage and determination of the country’s women, which represented all races and layers of society, and had delegates from as far away as Cape Town and Port Elizabeth. Current prime minister J. G. Strijdom refused to meet with the women, but was delivered 100 000 signatures that the Federation of South African Women had collected in protest to the further restriction on people’s movement planned by the apartheid government.
During the tournament, we asked the participants to share with us why they loved being a girl. We asked this question in an effort to remind our players about the strength they possess and the goals they can achieve, despite living in a patriarchal society. Want to learn a bit more? Then take a look right here. To hear our players’ answers, you’ll have to wait until October 11th, 2013, which is the International Day of the Girl Child.
We’re also wrapping up an exciting month where we hosted a series of workshops at St Paul’s Primary School in Bo-Kaap, in the Western Cape. We were pleased to see not only the girls’ football skills improve, but also enjoyed watching their communication skills flourish, not only after the games, but also during. Our participants were soon raising their hands to show they were free to receive the ball. This led to a goal by one of our players, and of course, an abundance of cheering! From the sidelines we even heard, “Did you see that goal? That was very good, I am impressed!” That type of positive reinforcement is not always commonplace, and it was great to see our players encourage one another.
We also had a fantastic opportunity to work with Microsoft’s Give for Youth Campaign, through which we are raising funds for different girls’ entrepreneurship activities. This has been an amazing opportunity for us, as it allowed us to create engaging new materials that support girls’ skills in entrepreneurship.
Without your support, we would not be able to achieve our goals, and we appreciate your consistent donations. Thank you very much and we look forward to the last quarter of 2013!
The Girls & Football SA team