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FUFA Women Football Symposium: The ‘Take Flight’ project is aimed at developing the game further

Federation of Uganda Football Associations(FUFA) has over the years made deliberate efforts to make sure Women’s football in the country makes strides. Since the inception of the FUFA Women Elite League in 2015, there has been a number of positives realised.

However, FUFA believes there is a need to even make better development and on that note, a symposium strictly looking at Women’s football has been held on Wednesday at Kabira Country Club in Kampala.

The symposium was aimed at bringing together different stakeholders in football to brainstorm and forge a way forward to how the game can be improved. These included club administrators, government, sponsors, FUFA and the media among others.

FUFA President Eng. Moses Magogo making his remarks during the symposium

A new Women’s football strategy dubbed ‘TAKE FLIGHT’ has also been launched with the major aim of increasing the number of women involved in the game.

Former Crested Cranes defender Jean Sseninde the brain behind the Sseninde Women Development tournament has been appointed the project manager. This will run for two years from 2019- 2021.

FUFA President Moses Magogo believes this is a good move to take women’s football to another level.

“As FUFA, whenever we have an idea, we always come together to brainstorm and bring ideas. We have formulated a good strategy called ‘TAKE FLIGHT’ that we believe will develop women’s football in Uganda. We want to increase the number of women involved in the game as we aim to fulfill our vision of becoming the number one footballing nation off and on the pitch.”

Minister of State for Sports Hon. Charles Bakkabulindi was impressed with the move by FUFA and is optimistic Women’s football will attain development in a short time.

“As government, we are proud of this step taken by FUFA because we want gender balance. I was impressed when I watched the FIFA Women World Cup and I was amazed by the way girls played football. I’m confident such steps will enable us to reach those levels.”

State Minister for Sports Hon. Charles Bakkabulindi making a speech during the symposium

Hesterine De Reus, the UEFA coaching instructor who also attended the symposium commended FUFA for the bold decision and asserted this is a move in the right direction.

Head of Women Football at Confederation of African Football(CAF), Safia Abdeldayem

“It is a very important day for Women football in Uganda. This is a step in making sure development is realized. Uganda has a very young squad and with the World Cup expanded by eight countries, this is a chance for Uganda to focus in qualifying for such tournaments.” She said.

Some of the key FUFA officials that attended the symposium included first FUFA Vice President Justus Mugisha, second FUFA Vice President Darius Mugoye and Paul Ssali one of the pioneers of women’s football in Uganda.

The key strategic goals in the ‘TAKE FLIGHT’

UEFA coaching instructor Hesterine De Reus, during the Symposium

project;

–          To increase women involved in football

–          To improve the women’s football league and national teams

–          Create revenue-generating streams for women’s football

–          Increase the number of girls playing football

Take Flight Project Manager Jean Sseninde making a presentation during the FUFA Women’s Football Symposium

To increase women involved in football

Coaches

–          Holding two women coaching courses

–          Holding two refresher courses

Women Football stakeholders attending a symposium at Kabira Country Club

Administrators

–          Two women representatives on FUFA EXCOM

–          Clubs to have at least two women on their Executive committee

–          Women Employment in clubs with a ratio of 1:4

–          Of the 6 delegates from a region, 1 must be a woman

–          30% secretariat at FUFA to be women

–          One capacity building for women

Women Football stakeholders in a group discussion during the symposium

Refereeing

–          Holding 1 women’s referees course

–          Recruiting 35 more women in specialized refereeing

Scouting Women Players

–          Training two women football player scouts

–          Sending women football scouts to different competitions

Ambassadors

–          Getting five women as ambassadors for the women’s game.

Women Football stakeholders in a group discussion during the symposium

To improve Women football leagues and National teams

–          Improving the competition format

–          Introducing a standard club licensing system

–          Improving the quality of players in the league both on and off the pitch

National Teams

–          Crested Cranes

–          U20

–          U18

–          U16

International Competitions

–          CECAFA 2019, 2020 and 2021

–          World Cup qualifiers 2020 and 2021

–          AWCON/ AWCON qualifiers

–          Crested Cranes Namutiima for home-based players (8 FUFA regions)

–          4 friendly matches (2020 and 2021)

FUFA Women’s football symposium at Kabira Country Club

National team activities

–          Training camps (One each category a year)

–          National team management activities (Media training workshops)

–          Welfare incentives – Monthly payments for national team players

To create revenue generation for women’s football

Marketing and Communication

–          Hiring a marketing specialist

–          Formulating a marketing strategy

–          Introducing a weekly women’s football show

Sensitization

–          Using Ambassadors, musicians and players to sensitize masses during Crested Cranes Namutima competitions

–          Community outreaches by players

–          Holding a women’s football symposium

Advocacy

–          Getting influential figures to advocate for women’s football such as Members of Parliament, Local Council leaders

Multi- media

–          Hiring a specialist to record all league games and competitions

–          Creating active women’s football social media pages

–          All league teams must have active social media pages

Some of the participants attending FUFA Women’s football symposium

Branding

–          Acquiring branding materials such as teardrops, merchandise such as T-shirts, bag packs, caps, umbrellas, placing league logo on team jerseys.

Finance

–          FIFA Forward Programs

–          Government

–          FUFA Sources

–          Creating partnerships

–          Sponsorship

To increase the number of Women/Girls playing football

–          Improving schools’ girls football

–          Visiting 8 schools in each FUFA region

–          Partnering with the ministry of Education and Sports

–          Post competition trainings

Mass Football

–          Visiting 8 communities from the 8 FUFA regions about football for all such as football for disabled

–          Holding a holiday football clinic for women in 2020

Outreach project in communities

–          Involving players as role models visiting communities to inspire young girls

–          Partnering Uganda Premier League clubs to advocate for more women involvement

MAIN PHOTO: Women Football stakeholders in a group photo after the symposium

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