In the more than 11 years since programming began at Fútbol Sin Fronteras Granada, our program has consistently grown and expanded. Our team has discovered creative ways to reach more girls and contribute to the larger growth of the women’s game in Nicaragua; whether through creating new teams, establishing expansion sites in La Villa, Fortin, La Laguna, and Diamante, facilitating ‘La Liga Escolar’ for more than 10 secondary school teams, or scaling up the annual ‘Copa de la Paz’ to include teams from other cities.
A substantial piece of FSF’s contribution to the growth of the women’s game has been through camps and clinics run in collaboration with other communities and organizations. In building upon the success of our 2018 Women’s Sports Corps Camp in Pearl Lagoon, the Fútbol Sin Fronteras team will again branch out into a community, new to us this time, in Chontales with the support of Plan International and the US Embassy. From today through October 27th, 6 FSF coaches—including 5 program alumnae—will implement a soccer camp for more than 60 girls from the city of Boaco and the surrounding area. The camp will serve as a continuation of Plan’s locally run girls league and include soccer sessions, leadership reflections and team-building activities for youth. FSF coaches will also utilize this opportunity to work with an additional 12 community coaches, sharing best practices in engaging girls and equipping coaches with the knowledge and tools to continue providing opportunities for more than 200 girls in their own communities.
In recent months, FSF has also made investments in tracking the reach of our special events and programs in an effort to learn more about our greater impact throughout Nicaragua. In celebration of the International Day of the Girl, FSF hosted our annual ‘Carrera de la Niña’ inviting girls from the communities of La Laguna, Fortin, and Diamante to participate in the day’s program. More than 160 girls, ages 4-18 participated in the race which included 5 age-based categories and distances. In September, la Copa de Paz spanned 2 weekends and included more than 300 players, enabling 20 teams from more than 5 communities and 6 organizations to take part in 10 hours of tournament play. Carolina, a member of the team representing el Colegio Mercedes Mondragon reflected on the excitement of seeing more girls on the pitch, “What I enjoyed the most was playing football as friends and having so much fun and meeting more girls who also love to play football.”
As we approach the final months of 2019 programming, FSF will be assessing the larger impact our work has had on the women’s game in Nicaragua, such as the number of additional youth reached through special events, coaches trained through our workshops and collaborations, leagues hosted, equipment provided and much more. To follow our team’s work in Chontales this week and support our alumnae-coaches as they lead the next Women’s Sports Corps Camp, check out the Fútbol Sin Fronteras Facebook page.