Do you know Mariam S, Amina, Sarah, Christine, Esse, Mwanaidi, Fatume and Mariam C?
You will soon get to know them as the MTG team. They impressed in Nairobi with their great attitudes and brilliant soccer skills. But who are they? It is time to get to know the players a little better. Each of these young women have experienced first hand the power of sport to change lives. Now they will embark on a great adventure as they turn their passion for soccer into activism for the Global Goals as they prepare to join us in New York City in September. Klick here to meet the players
Do you know Mariam S, Amina, Sarah, Christine, Esse, Mwanaidi, Fatume and Mariam C?
What if, changing what you cannot accept and standing up for gender equality was no longer a lonely, unrecognized and often degrading endeavor? What if, our gender trailblazers were celebrated as we do sportsstars? What if activism was a teams sport?
Who would you put on your SDG5 Dreamteam to fight for glory and the world we want?
Together with the Danish permanent mission to the UN, we are asking eight established role models, development organizations and decision makers from all over the world to each nominate a player, whom they think would make a great asset to the SDG5 Dreamteam. The Dreamteam will be invited to play for SDG5 in the GGWCUP final in New York this September. The team is made up of young female activists, whom the nominators would like to promote for their dedication and achievements. -Someone who inspires us all to keep fighting!
On March 13th during the Commission on the Status of Women conference at the UNHQ in New York, we nominated the first two players, and revealed their Dreamteam "Soccer Cards".
The event was hosted by the Danish and Kenyan permanent missions and our partners.
Each new player will have her own Soccer Card, presenting her unique achievements and general awesomeness. The players will be celebrated like the champions they are, and they will now have a global team of sisters and the full support and attention of the GGWCUP community.
Our first nominators were her excellency Cabinet Secretary of the Ministry of Public Service, Youth and Gender from Kenya Mrs Sicily Kariuki. And her excellency Minister for Equal Opportunity and Nordic Cooperation Ms Karen Ellemann. They nominated Fatuma Abdulkadir Adan and Emma Holten to the Dreamteam. Go to the Dreamteam page to see their Soccer cards. Stay tuned as we nominate a new player each month leading up to the Global final in new York in September. See more pictures from the day here, where we were also pleasantly disrupted by one of our favorite activist teams: The ever relevant and unapologetic ladies from Girl Be Heard
A special thank you to UNDP, the Office of the Secretary Generals Envoy on Youth, Save the Children, Women Deliver, UN Women and the NYC Mayors office.
Photos by Freya Morales, UNDP
Nairobi March 4th 2017
"We saw how much fun the men and children where having when they played soccer, and we decided to start our own soccer club" Says Mariam Mpaata, team captain of the Soccer Divas.
But when she and a group of women founded the first female amateur soccer club in Mombasa, they made it about more than just soccer. They made it about standing united to heal and improve their community.
"When we heard about Global Goals World Cup we thought YES it is made for us!" The team decided to play for Goal number 16: Peace and Justice, because they wanted to prevent the upcoming elections from reigniting the violence and unrest, that has been seen in Kenya in the past.
"We have realized, that as women we have power to create change. Because we are influencing both our sisters, our husbands and our children" Mpaata explains. "The soccer team became the platform, that gave us courage to raise our voice"...
The Global Goals World Cup was founded on the belief, that in itself, the cocktail of soccer and purpose is a great enabler of progress. But in combination with groups of dedicated women, it is almost like a chemical reaction. -Creating an unstoppable community of change agents! Mariam and her Divas are a perfect example. But the Soccer Divas from Mombasa are just one of 28 inspiring teams who played in Nairobi on March 5th. They are all a testament to the power of Sport (and women!) to change the world.
Happy International Day of Sport for Development and Peace from the GGWCUP team.
Thank you to our incredible partners from DANIDA, Save the Children, UNDP, Safaricom and GAIN who made this possible.
We asked for her picture, we got an anthem!
When we asked the ubercool drummer from the Danish band L.I.G.A to be a Global Goals World Cup ambassador, we could never have dreamed of the profound way she would impact our project. She showed up for what was just meant to be a regular photo shoot, doing a bit of PR for us, and left with the idea to compose our anthem!
Not only did she come through. She traveled to Nairobi with us and lifted the roof of the Impala Sports Club when she opened the tournament. She even played on the Zero Hunger Heroes Team from GAIN Alliance, which made it all the way to the finals!
Now, when we think about what it sounds like when the voice of hundreds of women is amplified into a great cheer for the world they want, we think it sounds just like when Ihan gets behind her hotpink drum set, and lets loose!
If you haven't yet seen the video from Nairobi here it is. Remember to turn the volume all the way up!
So much more to Ihan Haydar
You do not have to spend much time with Ihan Haydar to realize that as gorgeous and talented as she is, there is just so much more to her. She has that special courage to change what she cannot accept, which we have come to recognize as a universal trait of all the amazing activists we meet through our work.
Ihan had to fight, even for the right to express her musical talent. Growing up in Denmark with quite strict Iraqi parents, she was not encouraged to take music lessons. But she taught herself to play the drums, sneaking into the music room at school, while pretending to be at study hall. She was finally found out when she appeared on national TV, winning the Eurovision Song Contest.
By then her parents where able to appreciate her gift. But although she traveled to Azerbaijanto represent Denmark in the Song Contest, she still struggles to gain Danish citizenship. This is due to the ever stricter process implemented in order to limit the number of foreigners in Denmark. To that we can only say: Thank you Iraq, for giving us Ihan. We claim her as Danish all the way!
The universal language of soccer
Another thing you quickly come to learn about Ihan, is that she is a woman of action. Once she has an idea, she is unstoppable. A few years back, she visited the Greek island of Lesbos to help the many refugees who are stranded there. She returned home with a burning desire to make a difference. She realized, that although her resources are limited, and that she cannot fix everything, she could use her love for soccer to brighten the lives of refugee children living in Denmark. So she started coaching a team of young boys. Watching how these little, sometimes traumatized humans lit up and came to life on the pitch, and how the language barriers between the multiethnic refugees crumbled when they communicated through the universal language of soccer.
We continue to be humbled and inspired by the great people who have joined us in dreaming the dream of a global activist world cup, brining women from all parts of the world together to raise their voices, take action and play for change. And thanks to Ihan Haydar -now we also know what that dream sound like!
Heads turned every time the team of tall athletic players from Moving the Goalpost entered the field. But it was not just their great soccer skills that made them win the Global Goals World Cup. In our tournament, winning the match only gives you one point out of 4 possible. And the players from MTG knew that. They fully embraced their role as movers and shakers, activating the crowd with their great dance moves and brilliant mood, leading by example through superior fairplay and emanating the passion and conviction of the Moving the Goalspost Organisation based in Kilifi Coastal Kenya: To insist on creating a more inclusive, just, and peaceful world where girls’ and women’s full human rights are realized and protected.
Stay tuned as we post a series of stories about the players, and their journey to the final
It has been over a year since the Global Goals went into effect. In a perfect world, by now every woman, man and child would be aware of, and working towards this amazing plan to transform our planet for the better. Let's just say, progress could be faster! But sometimes change begins with something as simple as changing our conversations. So this is our challenge to you: Please have at least one conversation with a friend, a family member, a co-worker or a total stranger about the goal you are most passionate about, what will happen if we do not succeed with this goal, and what we can do to improve our odds. You don't have to have all the answers. Just start the conversation...Today!
Don't know which goal is your goal? Take the cool Global Goals Quiz here and find out.
Read more about the Global Goals here
The 17 UN Global goals for Sustainable Development agreed by 193 nations in 2015 are the must win battles of our generation. They will require an extraordinary and unified effort from governments, NGO’s, private companies and civil societies. But the real key to success is that we – the people –get engaged and take action.
In his final speech US President Barak Obama said: "Change only happens when ordinary people get involved"
If you ask us: What are we fighting for? This is it: To create a space where ordinary people, especially ordinary women feel that they have the power to do extraordinary things, power to change the world. That is what Global Goals World Cup is about. We are setting out to use sport to ignite activism all over the world. Next stop Nairobi. We hope you will join us. Virtually or in real life. March 5th is the day. Warming up for international Womens day, we will play for the change we want to see in this world.
We would like to thank our amazing partners who are with us on this journey: The danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Save the Children, UNDP and joining the team in Kenya: Safraicom and MYSA. We look so much forward to embarking on this journey with you.
On November 7th Majken Gilmartin was presented with the IOC Women And Sport award for Europe. She won the award for her tireless commitment and original work for women and girls in soccer.
The first Dane to ever win this prize, Majken Gilmartin was awarded the trophy at a gala event in Lausanne by Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark.
Read about the award here