Kefas Shipi Elago
Oshakati-The much-anticipated NFA Galz & Goals Festival proved a huge success in Oshana Region last Saturday, bringing together a record number of 568 girls from various schools in Oshana to take part in a football development tournament held at Oshakati Independence Stadium.
The Galz & Goals progamme aims to increase access to football for adolescent girls aged 10-20 years through the creation of U/13, U/15, U/17 and U/20 leagues in targeted regions throughout Namibia.
“With this programme girls learn life skills through well-coordinated activities that range from HIV/AIDS education, life skills and the promotion of a healthy lifestyle,” said Jackie Gertze, national manager for NFA Galz & Goals.
Gertze said Oshana has the potential to feed the national team because the girls showed commitment and desire to play football.
She added that despite the festival falling in the mid-term break when learners were to go home, the majority stayed behind to attend the festival, which is a clear indication that girls love the game of football.
Kandjengendi Primary School scooped gold in the U/13 category while the girls from Chalres Adreson won the U/15s, with Oshakati SS winning the U/17s, and Iipumbu SS were crowned champions in the U/20s.
Shilumbu Elizabeth from Oshakati SS was selected best overall player of the tournament, thus earning her an automatic qualification to the national U/17 football team in which she is expected to make her debut against Ghana this year.
Agnus Chabala Elemu, the coordinator of Oshana NFA Galz & Goals, was appointed as assistant coach for both the U/17 and U/20 national teams.
Jacquie Shipanga urged the coordinator to start a Galz & Goals league in the second trimester when schools reopen, saying that from Oshana league they will select their best players to represent the region at the national U/17 festival slated for Oshana Region in September.