Inspiration Sports

Netball, The Power Of Sport

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Netball, basketball’s cousin, a popular women’s sport in Africa, could make a real difference to participating communities. Get motivated by a heartwarming video from Kenyan women.

All Africa.  Five African countries — Malawi, South Africa, Uganda, Tanzania and Botswana — are in the world top 20, and experts predict that in the coming years even more will join them. Great news for netball, which will be invigorated by the greater depth of international competition, and it’s breathing new energy into African countries that have seldom competed in the big leagues of any sport due to low incomes and limited resources.

And the trend reaches far beyond the world’s top teams. As the middle class expands and incomes increase, more and more people are getting involved in recreational sport, and in less advantaged regions, netball is being used as a tool to empower communities, from young children to working mothers.

Netball’s stars of today are inspiring would-be legends of tomorrow, which is recasting the sport as a path to women’s empowerment globally.

The women of the Nyamonge neighborhood of Chiga village in Kisumu, Kenya, all part of the initiative Mama Hope, are the stars of this beautiful and inspiring video.

Just in time for International Woman’s Day – which is celebrated globally on March 8 – it’s time to get schooled in the women’s art of netball. Their motivation to shoot this film is as simple as it is motivating:

“We wanted to show something we love.”

Some of them own small businesses. Some farm, sell dried fish, make breakfast breads, sell fabric and scarves, or sing for a living. All of them are mothers and most are caregivers for orphans in their own home. They are leaders of water committees and microfinance groups. They also carry water on their heads for miles, live in one room homes with mud packed walls, and worry about paying their children’s school fees.

Amongst all this, it’s practice four times a week and, at times, walking over four miles for tournaments. These ladies don’t mess around.


Please read Niamh Ní Mhaoileoin’s article about the hype and the power of Netball on OZY.  Get more information about Netball in Africa.  Mama Hope on their website, on Facebook and on Twitter.