A pivotal rugby goal for Malawian girls
Africathletics’ new project entirely dedicated to women’s rugby and its social reflections
Africathletics continues its commitment to Malawi, further developing its sports, educational and social activities. In this case, we are not talking about track and field, but the new project dedicated to women’s rugby: a courageous leap forward, which has involved many girls and which, fortunately, has been received with extreme enthusiasm by the local communities. Luigi Vescovi, rugby player and link between Africathletics and the universe of the oval ball, tells us about it. His testimony allows us to discover how, once again, unimaginable human and social results can be achieved through sport.
“I never thought I would see a rugby team made up of 21 Malawian girls. It’s exciting. Actually it was exciting from the very beginning. We knew it wasn’t going to be easy, but after talking to all the village leaders and institutions, we were able to get a lot of schools involved, a lot of girls and teachers who wanted to become coaches. Africathletics’ spirit wants sports activity to be a means of spreading food awareness, raising the level of schooling and changing lives. In this specific case we are dealing with young girls and sport is something essential for them. Just think of the mom-child phenomenon, the inability to choose what to do with their lives. We have created a safe space, a community excited about this discipline, and the results can be seen even in parallel activities, such as school. This project has ushered in a mechanism of constancy that is far from obvious in Malawi; think, for example, the attendance rate at these girls’ trainings is around 100 percent… Myself and other volunteers, all united by a rugby past and present, have laid the groundwork for a project that has brought tremendous results: the girls now have the opportunity to stay longer in school, curate new educational aspects, and handle topics such as gender equality. In the past few months we have admired the evolution of these athletes and have been amazed at the first complex goals. Last week they even played their first friendly match…. Now our vision is projected toward the Southern African Youth Games, to be held in 2025 in Namibia. Rugby Union Malawi has taken an interest in the project, and our hope is to see some of the girls we are training called up – it is a dream, but a concrete dream.”
To learn more about and support the Africathletics project, click here.
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