As a South African, I continue to be moved by the words of Nelson Mandela, who said: “Sport has the power to change the world. It has the power to inspire. It has the power to unite people in a way that little else does. It speaks to youth in a language they understand. Sport can create hope where once there was only despair”.
We have an opportunity to put these ideals into action for the realization of gender equality and women’s empowerment—both in sport itself and in the wider world, through sport. Sport can be one of the great drivers of gender equality, by teaching women and girls the values of teamwork, self-reliance and resilience. It can provide girls with social connections and a refuge from violence in their homes and communities, and help them to understand their bodies and build confidence and the ability to speak up, particularly during adolescence, when the pressure to conform to traditionally “feminine” stereotypes leads many girls to abandon sport entirely.
read more in www.unwomen.org