ACTIVE GIRLS IN SPORT

SA Active Indoor and Outdoor Sports (PTY) Ltd, has been carefully structured and designed for one specific purpose. Helping develop and create opportunities for girls through sport. Whilst most schools have an elite group of girl athletes, one often finds that the rest are left behind and don’t get that important opportunity to be part of and or participate in any sporting disciplines. We want to give these girls an opportunity. Through experience, I have uncovered potential, just by paying attention to the “forgotten girls”, who lose interest, yet still have the desire without the opportunity.

By the age of 14, girls drop out of sports twice as often as boys. According to the Women’s Sports Foundation, factors such as social stigma, lack of access, safety and transportation issues, costs and lack of positive role models, can all contribute to the reasons why girls drop out of sports in their adolescent years. If these factors can be addressed, I believe that more girls will remain involved in sport and physical activity throughout their lives.

Active Sports aims to use sport as a tool for social change by providing youth the opportunities to overcome barriers they face while growing up in challenging environments. As an organization, we address the factors that hinder youth participation in sports by providing them access to quality sport programs and ensuring that positive role models inspire young girls.

Participation in sport and physical activity positively impacts physical and mental health, and reduces the probability of young people engaging in risky behavior’s such as unsafe sexual activities and drug use. Girls deserve the right to participate in athletic opportunities, which were once inaccessible for all females. Today we, as a sport for development sector, need to uncover and invest in innovative methods to retain the number of women and girls in sports. It is our responsibility to demonstrate to girls that it is socially acceptable to participate in sports; it can give girls the skills and confidence to break down barriers and achieve goals throughout their lives.

Sports can address gender issues and promote gender equality on a global scale. Girls can benefit from participating in sports because of the long-term positive effects it can have on their well-being and livelihood.

Staying active and participating in physical activity can prevent chronic diseases such as obesity and heart disease, lower rates of substance abuse, reduce risky behaviors, and decrease rates of teenage pregnancies. Furthermore, girls will have better mental health, higher self-image and confidence levels, improved teamwork and communication skills, increased academic rates, and leadership skills that can lead to achievement opportunities in school and at work.