Liverpool F.C Women Scoring Goals with Goal Girls!

LiverpoolIt was all fun and excitement on 19th of February at NASDEC in Lusaka because we had Martha Harris, Rosie White and Kate Longhurst from Liverpool F.C here to spend a morning with our Goal girls playing football and doing Goal sessions.

The event was  graced by the Director of Sport in the Ministry of Sport and Youth Ms. Bessie Chelemu, Standard Chartered Bank Zambia Corporate Affairs Manager Ms. Christine Matambo, the General Secretary of the National Sports Council of Zambia, Col. Chitambo and the Director of NOWSPAR Ms. Matilda Mwaba.

When the speeches had been said, the rest of the time was spent doing Be Money Savvy Goal Games and practicing football skills and moves. The Goal girls at the event received football boots and jerseys for their continued football practice. The Goal girls are members of our implementing partner organisations, 20 girls are part of Life Skills Foundation in Garden Chilulu Compound, 10 girls were Goal graduates from New Mtendere School and we had 15 of our Goal Facilitators participating in the event.

The event started on a joyous note with some entertainment from the Goal girls and ended with everyone mutually inspired and energised to reach higher heights through Goal.



Community Coaches’ Training in Kitwe and Kafue

Following the graduation of Premier Skills Coach Educators in September 2015, NOWSPAR with the support from British Council in Zambia is providing training to the Community Coaches in our implementing partner organisations.

The training at the NOWSPAR Club in Kitwe was held from 21st to 23rd January 2016 at Good Samaritan Community School. Of the 24 participants 10 were female, 9 were male youth and 5 were male teachers. The trainning was facilitated by two premier skills coach trainers Elizabeth Banda from Grassroots Soccer and Jason Miti from OYDC.

In Kafue, with our partner Kafue Queens Club, 15 coaches were trained at the training that took place on the 4th to the 6th of February 2016 in Shikoswe and was facilitated by Trainer Jason Miti from OYDC supported by Maketo Ng’ombe from NOWSPAR.

Premier Skills focuses on community football coach and referee development aimed at supporting grassroots level activities. The coaches we train work in community clubs, schools, churches, and NGOs running sport activities and life skills sessions for children and youth. This is part of NOWSPAR’s strategy to facilitate opportunity to fun, safe and good quality sport at community level for every body.

The next coaches’ training will be held in Choma with coaches working at our two new partners; Choma Children’s Development Programme (CCDP) and Mabana Organisation.


Coach Educator and Community Coaches Awarded Football Coaching Certificates

Coach Educators

Coach Educators

On 25th September 2015, One of our Young Women in Sport Leaders Mirriam Nanyiza was among the 10 community coaches that graduated from being community coaches to Coach Educators.

Mirriam Nanyiza and other community coaches from Sport in Action, Edusport, Baulenin United, Grassroot Soccer and Olympic Youth Development Centre have been undergoing a training in football development and coaching. The coach Educator course is run by the British Council under the Premier Skills Programme and has been running since 2014.

Premier Skills focuses on community level football development. The project is aimed at using football as a tool to engage young people and community leaders. It is believed that Football or any sport can be used to address challenges or issues that affect young people such as HIV/AIDS education, drug abuse, peer pressure and many more.

Miriam (in red) with the 10 Community coaches

Miriam (in red) with the 10 Community coaches

In the final phase of Premier Skills which is Phase 3 stage 3, the 10 Coach Educators had to train other community coaches who have minimum experience in football coaching. NOWSPAR brought 10 Community Coaches to this training.

The 10 Community Coaches were from various partners that NOWSPAR works with including Mabana Organisation in Choma, Kafue Queens, Liteta GirlPower Community Club, Kitwe Sports Club and the Deaf Sports Association in Matero Lusaka.

After the 4 days training, the 10 community coaches were awarded Football coaching certificates.

“I am very excited to have this opportunity to be trained as a football coach” said Lubaya a girl from the Deaf Sports Development Organisation.

Mirriam Nanyinza has been Volunteering with NOWSPAR for 2 years and has developed as one of the leaders in the Goal Programme. Earlier this year Mirriam had received a Grant from the British Council to run a training Course for Coaches she works with in NOWSPAR.

This year, Mirriam is based in Norway, at the Sound Folk College as part of the Youth Sport Exchange Programme (YSEP) by NIF and Fredskopset (FK).

Shepolopolo: Speaking Out is Patriotic

Photo Credit: FAZ Facebook Page

Photo Credit: FAZ Facebook Page

[Lusaka] The Women’s National Football Team participation in the Africa Championships in Windhoek, Namibia is one of the best moments for women in football in Zambia. This is an indicator of the progress that we are making as a Country in the development of women’s football.

It is common knowledge that the participation of women in sport in Zambia is disproportionately low and from our work over the years, we have learnt that contributing factors include limited resources, gender bias and negative stereotypes.

On behalf of my organisation NOWSPAR, I wish to let you know that we are deeply disappointed that these young women’s patriotism is being brought into question when all they have done is diligently serve our Country and they have spoken up for their rights as is their duty and right.

Our understanding of Patriotism is love and commitment to one’s Country. As you are fully aware, the Women’s National Football Team is one of the most underfunded sports teams in our Country, among other conditions, they have persevered and are doing relatively well. Their engagement in football is for the love of the game, the desire to serve their country and to be the best athletes they can be. All these are indicators of patriotism.

As you are aware, our Football Association has a commitment to the development and fair treatment of women in football. Our own National Sports Policy calls for the addressing of barriers that affect women’s participation in sport, well, this is one of them.

When athletes participate in sport on national duty, it is the responsibility of the Association to ensure they have all their needs met; adequate equipment, time, technical support and allowances.

We are all aware that the sport sector still has resource challenges and limitations. With that in mind, there ought to be a relationship of trust between the athletes and the Association, and room to communicate appropriately and in time to ensure any challenges by either party are addressed in time.

We must treat our women’s national team with dignity and respect, and having young women have to struggle to get the recognition and support they need is unfair. Therefore, adequate preparations and considerations for their welfare must be made within the available resources that the Association has.

We urge stakeholders including the Football Association of Zambia, the National Sports Council, the Ministry of Sport and Youth, Sponsors, Media and Football Fans to:

  • speak out on the importance of fair treatment of athletes by all Sport Associations regardless of their sex, a National Team is a National Team despite their sex
  • ask the Football Association as a beneficiary of public funds to account for how these resources benefit women
  • highlight the plight of the women’s football teams in this context and how your Ministry and other stakeholders can contribute now and in the long term
  • inquire into the Policy frameworks that can facilitate adequate resource allocation to women in sport programs
  • take lead in promoting women’s participation in sport as part of national target of 80% of the population accessing a sport of their choice as established in Zambia’s Vision 2030

We are proud of the Women’s National Football Team; by speaking up when something is not right, they are contributing to bringing about a change that will benefit not just them but future footballers and other athletes as well. That, Hon. Minister, is an act of patriotism.

So, as we celebrate Zambia’s Golden Jubilee, our wish is to see the Women’s National Football Team valued and respected as much as the Men’s National Football Team.

Shepolopolo: scoring football and personal goals

Women's Football Team

The Women National Football Team will be heading to Namibia this month to compete in the 9th African Women Championship taking place on 11th -25th October in Namibia. Currently in camp, the team are preparing to score goals not just in this tournament but also in their own lives.

In partnership with the Women’s Committee, NOWSPAR presents workshop sessions with the team on various topics including rights, gender inequality, protection from violence and leadership.


One of the players asking Fatima a question

This week,the session conducted focused on Financial Literacy and was based on the Goal Curriculum and led by our staff Fatima assisted by Chikondi and Bertha. We had 29 players and 4 members of the Technical Team.

The discussion covered the importance of financial literacy in personal development and leadership, explored how the young women acquired money and what key expenses they have, decision making and the role of money in empowerment.



SessionThe players mentioned that a major motivation for saving money is the short term and risky nature of a career in football and therefore the need for other options for earning money. Players are concerned that although they would like to play football professionally just like men, women’s football in Zambia does not enable them to earn any income. Even the basic allowances for practical expenses while they are on national duty are too little and at times not provided. They would want their team to be more valued like the men’s teams.

Having limited income increases both the need and the challenge of saving, and considering the social status that the young women hold as National Team players, the players recognise the conflicting demands and desires on how to spend the money they earn in and outside football.


Tech Team


Suggestions for topics for discussion in the next workshop include communication, conflict resolution and rights.

Read more about the African Women Championship here and follow us on Twitter @nowspar for updates on how the Team will be getting on.


Football Sheroes Qualify for Africa Cup

Kabange Mupopo

Kabange Mupopo leading the challenge

Congratulations to the Women’s National Football Team for their historic qualification to take part in the Africa Cup after their success in the match played against Zimbabwe at Nkoloma Stadium.


This is a glaring example of women’s potential to participate and excel at high level competitions given adequate support in material, coaching, training facilities and equipment as well as public moral support.


‘We are aware of how far these young women are coming and the myriad of barriers they have had to overcome to get to this point in the history of Zambian football. We call upon media publishers to profile these young women so we can know their stories and they can motivate and inspire our nation with their sporting success.’ NOWSPAR Executive Director Ms. Matilda Mwaba said.


‘To begin with, the Football Association should have the Women’s team profiles on the FAZ website. Let us not leave women out of the football conversation and history, let us keep them visible because they are present. To deny them media space is to reject their existence. The men’s national team is on the website, are the Shepolopolo not our national team too?’


NOWSPAR looks forward to more of the Zambian women’s teams across the sporting community to progress as far as possible and to break their own sporting records.
Best wishes to the Team, we are proud of you. Read more about their game against Zimbabwe here and about our work on safeguarding from harassment and abuse in football here.

Play Free! Safeguarding Shepolopolo

NOWSPAR in partnership with the Football Association of Zambia (FAZ) Women’s Football Department conducted a Safeguarding Workshop with the members of the Women’s Under 17 National Football Team.
PresentationsThe workshop explored issues of gender relations, women’s rights, dealing with increase in income and popularity, vulnerability and power and recognising and dealing with gender based violence and codes of conduct.
Through a mix of presentations, discussions, question and answer style sessions, the workshop engaged both players and technical staff of the Team to provide information on gender based violence, on reporting facilities including Life Line 116 which is toll free, being a support network for one another as a team and the duty of care that technical staff have.
Ms. Mwaba presenting on ProtectionKey issues that arose include low allowances for players, limited camping time, insufficient training equipment and apparel, verbal abuse and requests for sexual favours from male players and technical staff not just of the team but around the facility where they are and in their communities as well.
One of the players said, ‘Sometimes you find that when a girl refuses to give in to sexual favours to a coach, he will tell her to be on the bench. He will even tell you that you will be on the bench for the rest of your life
Group DiscussionsThe discussions also raised issues of players also making sexual advances at coaches and managers. The ambitions and desire to be on the national team can be so strong that some will want to take this high risk to be on the team. Other factors include the attraction of money that is offered by men acting inappropriately towards girls.
Sometimes you really want to be on the team and if you are offered money you get tempted to make yourself available to coaches or other male staff who want to have sex with you.’ Another girls said.
The team manager was pointed out as a key person in the reporting system in cases of vulnerability or impropriety.
I always tell the girls that coaches are not interested in powder [beauty] but in football. I point out to the girls that if the coach wants to harm you, report to the team manager but if you wrongly accuse the coach, the coach will take you to court. I often tell the girls that they have the power within them to resist.’ One male coach said.
Some agreed steps for moving forward include another workshop to cover some of the topics in detail and taking forward the results and issues raised to the Women’s Football Committee for action.
The workshop had 23 players and 7 technical staff 4 of whom are male.
The technical team said this was a good initiative as they too are learning some of the practices that they may have are inappropriate and are also encouraged because safeguarding the welfare of the team was a collective responsibility.

The girls were presented with T-Shirts labelled Sheroes – Shepolopolo to encourage them and support them in their role as national flag carriers, sport ambassadors and contributing to breaking the stereotype that football is men’s sport.

NOWSPAR is part of the FAZ National Committee on Development of Women’s Football, the Football Association has been actively engaging with NOWSPAR on promoting women’s football, addressing gender issues and on safeguarding in particular.

This workshop is part of the strategies towards education of players and technical staff agreed in the 2011 Guidelines on Addressing Gender Based Violence in Sport, the 2013 Integrity of Sport Conference and the FIFA Com-Unity Seminar.
The Shepolopolo Team are in camp getting ready for their friendly match to be played against Zimbabwe on Saturday 24th May in Harare.