“Girls are in need of a safe space to play in freely, entertain, express themselves, and practice the sports they love without being subject to discrimination based on their gender, which many times leads them to quit”. Those were the words of Mona Yaacoub, Fe-Male member, and founder of Play In Her Shoes Initiative, who organized, a streetball tournament on December 15, 2019, sponsored by Fe-Male, and dedicated to women and girls only, to encourage them to practice sports.
Eighty-five adolescent and young girls teamed up and challenged each other in a first of its kind event in Lebanon. The teams were divided according to age group, where there were five teams of girls under 18 years old, and 16 teams above 18. In an interactive and encouraging atmosphere with the presence of the break-dancer Lana Ramadan, more than 100 women, men and youth attended the event which aimed at breaking the stereotypical image of women and girls who do sports and challenging the patriarchal monopoly in this domain and thus promoting gender-equality through the different types of sports they practice. Such a small contribution had a lot of impact on the girls participating where they felt acknowledged for their efforts in sports, and encouraged to continue to pursue their passion.
Sometimes small but creative and new ideas and approaches can pave the way for more impact and achievements in our struggle to reach and serve every woman and girl from different stands of life and break gender stereotypes in all domains including sports.