Female Football Athletes Return from Belize U.S. Visitor Sports Program

Female Football Athletes Return from Belize U.S. Visitor Sports Program

And while those young Ambassadors departed for the US, today five female football athletes returned to the country after taking part in the first Belize U.S. Visitor Sports Program. The five under-eighteen national team players spent two weeks at Princeton University where they underwent physical skills and leadership training. The university also provided the athletes with the opportunity to exchange cultural experiences with athletes from across the world. Love News was there for their return and spoke to young footballers, Shamika Lambey and Chesley Chuck, about their experience. 

Director of the National Sports Council, Iris Centeno, explained that the trip also provided insight into the many opportunities available in the sporting sector. 

Iris Centeno, New Sports Director: “This trip was very awesome. We get to allow the girls to experience different cultures but for me it’s more about empowerment, allowing the girls to see that through sport we can make a difference. Sometimes athletes tend to believe that it’s just a game. But we want them to understand that their voices can actually make a change. So encouraging the females to understand that leadership is very important to the sports. It’s important for me, it’s important for the country. We need to start to use this sport to make a difference in our communities and the trip for me is just about empowerment, leadership, and allowing the girls to see that there is more than just staying home and maybe thinking about getting married, you know? So I just want the girls to see that they can conquer dreams out there. We were able to share some time with Miss Julie Fowdy. She’s a legend in the United States. She was the captain of the national team and champion as well when it comes to World Cup. So imagine to have a player in that caliber being able to share among the girls and she was just like a regular person just like us right there, showing them the skills, telling them about the different stuff she’d been able to accomplish. And then she’s just like inspired the girls, inspired me, inspire everybody. So the girls get to see that through football or through the sports you can actually go fight and just playing it at home for fun. So I think it’s inspiring and the girls were definitely very happy to be there.”

The initiative was the brainchild of the Love Foundation and the US Embassy in Belize.

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