Botswana: 'Support Women in Sport to Increase Participation'

Maun — Supporting women football will not only enhance their performance but witness increased women participation in the sport.

The Nhabe Regional Football Association (NRFA) vice chairperson, Ephraim Kgwarae said this during a handing over ceremony of football kits to five teams at Maun over the weekend.

The beneficiaries are Real Killers, Maun Senior Secondary School, Maun Terrors, Moeti and Tshwaragano Junior Secondary Schools respectively and all the teams play in the regional soccer league.

Kgwarae said they realised that football clubs were struggling and faced with challenges such as shortage of kits hence their request to Botswana Football Association (BFA) to come to their rescue in a bid to grow women football.

He believed that the donation would motivate players to take sports seriously and unleash their potential in the regional league.

NRFA vice chairperson decried that women were still dragging their feet to participate in sports especially football despite interest shown by young girls.

Kgwarae revealed that currently, they had only five football clubs adding that they still had a long way to go as their aim was to form at least 10 women football clubs.

"It's unfortunate as women are reluctant to spearhead the formation of the clubs with most of the existing clubs led by men. We believe that if women could come on board, it will be easy for them to attract more women players and have more clubs," he added.

The vice chairperson also decried lack of sponsorship to run tournaments noting that, that frustrates players who were eager to play the game.

Together, he said they could overcome challenges and harness the true power of women's football in order to propel the sport forward.

NRFA secretary general, Mereotsile Juta said the donation was in line with BFA initiative of developing and growing women football in regions.

BFA, he said desired to ensure that football was accessible to women around the country.

The donation, he said would build a strong foundation and encourage competition amongst the beneficiary teams in the women football league.

Juta appreciated that Nhabe region was talented in sport and vowed that as a region they would continue to unearth, develop and nurture that talent.

He noted that as a region, they were pleased as one of their players had been identified and taken to school of excellence adding that such was an indication that there was potential in women.

The vice chairperson of Nhabe Women Football executive committee, Tselanngwefela Kommerese thanked BFA and NRFA for the noble gesture stating that they were expecting more to come noting that there was still more to be done by the football community and sports industry to harness the true potential of women's football.

He said their support would motivate clubs to work harder and take the women football league to greater heights.

Kommerese also highlighted that since the launching of women football in Nhabe, they had experienced sterling performance by clubs and stated that through support, they could do even better going forward.

"There is still much to be done in encouraging more women and girls into our sport and in developing women's football competitions and leagues," he added.

Kommerese urged the beneficiaries to take care of the kits noting that as they committee, they would ensure proper monitoring to ensure the kits were put in good use.

<i>Source : BOPA</i>

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