FIFA and the Grenada Football Association (GFA) hosted the FIFA Women’s Football Com-Unity Seminar at the Grenada National Stadium this week, to help further develop girls’ and women’s football across the country. Also this week, the U-20 Grenada women's team travelled to Jamaica to compete in the Caribbean Football Union (CFU) U-20 Women’s Tournament.
“What we are doing this week is a genuine advancement to the development of women’s football in Grenada. I genuinely believe the future of success in Grenada football is women,” said Cheney Joseph, President of the GFA. “I am asking that each and every one of you [seminar attendees] don’t just commit to these four days of the football seminar. It is what you do after that will make the difference.”
Over 80 participants from across Grenada, including clubs, coaches, players, community group leaders, police officers, school officials, media representatives and potential sponsors participated in this four-day seminar.
The seminar’s objectives, according to the GFA, were to raise the awareness and profile of women’s football in the country; generate ideas for the development and progress of female football; build long-term relationships between all the sectors represented and the football community; and reinforce the positive values of football for women and girls.
Opening Ceremony speakers included FIFA Development Officer for the Caribbean, Howard McIntosh; GFA President Cheney Joseph; and the Grenada Minister of Youth and Sports, the Honourable Emmaline Pierre.
“The people who are here can help push forward the flame as it relates to women and football in Grenada. Let's pull football together through our passion energies for the sport,” said Minister Pierre. “We cannot expect miracles if we are not starting to build a strong foundation.”
The seminar featured sessions on women’s football development, the role of the media and in promoting the game, and marketing and sponsorship for women’s football. FIFA Instructors Amanda Vandervort (USA) and Andrea Rodebaugh (MEX) presented case studies and facilitated working group sessions, and for three full days, the participants were totally immersed and invested in the development of women’s and girls’ football in Grenada.
“We were extremely impressed with the level of commitment, interest and engagement from all the participants this week. The wide range of representation from across the social, government, business, and footballing communities gives us high hope for the future of women’s football in Grenada,” said Rodebaugh.
Representatives from the GFA shared the vision for female football in Grenada, and pledged their commitment to building and implementing the strategic plans necessary to achieve this. The FIFA Women’s Com-Unity Seminar culminated with a Grassroots Girls Festival at the National Stadium where over 100 girls from across the Spice Island participated.
“FIFA’s goal is to ensure that every woman and girl who wishes to participate in football has the opportunity to do so,” said McIntosh. “But this seminar is not just about women's football. It's about the development of young girls and women to be better contributors to society. This will mean more opportunities, better football, more sponsors to support the game, and a better overall society in Grenada.”