Written by Brittany Leitch

Joining the Girls’ Soccer Team

Since I have been working with COSAD, I’ve had the great pleasure to invest some of my time in one of my favorite things: soccer.   Coordinating with COSAD, Principal Justina, and the two teachers in charge of sports at Kiteyagwa Primary School (Monica & Anajoyce), we’ve put together a small team of 26 girls, ages 10-15.  Once a week I walk over to the school and enjoy 2 hours on the field with these sweet kids.

Monica & Anajoyce hope we can acquire some additional gear for the team and play surrounding school in the near future.  There are a few challenges before that can happen, but all in time I hope we can make this a fun and spirited time for everyone.  With the enthusiastic support and provision of the school, it has taken surprisingly little effort on COSAD’s part to help launch the team (which is a fantastic picture of teamwork- neither of us could make it happen alone).  COSAD is primarily providing “the coach”, which is me!  

We had try-outs two weeks ago, which Monica helped me navigate.  We had 86 girls, two soccer balls, and I had two sheets of paper with Swahili phrases pertinent to practice.  I was so nervous, holding my breath the entire time, but it turned out to be a major success.  I was so proud of how well the kids followed directions with my limited Swahili and Charades.  It was heartbreaking having to turn most of the girls away, but it is fun to personally start to know the remaining 26 girls.  They are fun to work with and full of energy!

The idea of starting a similar boy’s team was brought up by the sports teachers, but because of my main duties at COSAD, it is not possible for me to do at this time.  If anyone wants to come volunteer to coach with me…. maybe we can make it happen??? 

Tryouts: Divided 86 girls into 12 small teams to play 7v.7.
Tryouts: Groups of seven sat patiently around the field waiting for their turn to play!  It was all I could do to keep things organized with nearly zero Swahili vocabulary.   

Tryouts: Nearing the end, the kids were amazing :) 

Girl’s team: First practice 1v.1’s

Girls’ Team: 1v.1 coaching…