Two players from the USA Women’s football team recently visited a local centre to participate in a youth tournament aimed at changing gender norms amongst young men.
Christen Press and Tobin Heath visited the Fifa Football for Hope Centre in Khayelitsha, where they participated in a tournament hosted by Grassroots Soccer SA. The tournament was aimed at engaging with young men to discuss issues around improved sexual and reproductive health. Grassroots Soccer SA is a health organisation that use the power of soccer to educate, inspire and mobilize youth in developing countries. The spokesperson Grassroots Soccer SA, Molly McHugh says, the tournament forms part of its aim to mobilize and reach young people, seeking to find ways to change gender norms.
“The tournament, known as the Equalise Project, is an initiative funded by the Swedish Postcode Foundation. The Foundation’s belief is that the world is getting better with the help of strong nonprofit organizations and it’s goal is to carry out that mission through projects that challenge, inspire and promote change. The goal of the tournament was to highlight how girls and boys can work together for better gender equality. Inviting both Press and Heath was just the icing on the cake to entertain the young men on women, as well as starting conversation around gender based violence with them.”