Women’s Month: Help our girls feel more #ComfortablyConfident
August 1, 2018

DID YOU KNOW in South Africa, of the Olympic athletes receiving support in 2015, only nine out of the 30 athletes (30%) were women. Though raw facts are hard to find, according to the Dept of Sport and Recreation strategic plan for 2020, current participation levels of women and girls at grassroots level is “particularly poor, with few opportunities for females to participate in sport at schools and clubs.” There are a number of reasons:

  • Safety and transportation issues.
  • Social stigma: idea that girls time should be better spent by helping in the home and not playing games, boys play games.
  • Cost: many cannot afford the most basic necessity to feel comfortable whilst playing sport – a sports bra.

Yet, did you know that:

  • High school girls who play sport are less likely to get pregnant.
  • Girls playing sport are more likely to do better in school and to finish matric than girls who do not play sports.
  • Girls who play sport have higher levels of confidence, which can lead to lower levels of depression and risky behaviours.

COOLPLAY is working with almost 500 girls across Cape Town to help transform their lives and achieve their goals in sports, education and life. We provide girls with a life skills curriculum and safe space to play as a team. Through rugby and netball, girls build their self esteem and find value in their own accomplishments. Our program helps girls stay in school, avoid risky behaviour and build meaningful lives on their own terms.

In early 2018, CoolPlay Area Manager Esther Sampson and CoolPlay Champions Nokulunga Mvandaba, Grace Mapfumo, and Feziwe Payi noticed that girls didn’t feel comfortable participating on the sports field without supportive underwear and that they usually felt self conscious or distracted. When they spoke to the girls they discovered that only 40% had the financial means to wear one and only 60% of the girls in their programs actually have any kind of bra.

For CoolPlay to make lasting change we need girls who feel confident and secure coming to our sessions and applying the life lessons they learn through sport on the field and off it. If girls commit to CoolPlay it means better academic results, better decision making, the ability to dismiss negative peer pressure which ultimately leads to successes in life. Please support CoolPlay in our campaign to provide 300 sports bras to girls across our programs.

To support us go to https://www.givengain.com/cc/coolplaycampaign/ and donate! Otherwise please contact info@coolplay.co.za to find out how else you can assist!