Ladies’ Turn Puts Spin on “Men’s” Sport
On Saturday, June 2 at the Mayor’s Office in Dakar, the U.S. Embassy sponsored the Senegalese premiere of the documentary film Ladies’ Turn. The documentary, which focuses on women’s’ soccer and female empowerment, was inspired by the work of “Ladies’ Turn,” an organization that strives to promote women’s soccer in Senegal.
In the film, director Helene Harder examined the personal experiences of young women striving to gain recognition and respect as young female soccer players. After the film, director Harder and members of Ladies' Turn answered questions. Audience members wanted to know about the challenges Senegal faces as it tries to ensure that girls have access to sports facilities. They asked how the young women deal with friends and family who are skeptical about allowing them to play a traditionally male sport. As they responded, the young women of Ladies’ Turn expressed gratitude for the skills, relationships, and experiences they have gained by taking part in the program. They were also eager to extend the same opportunity to other young women.
A broad audience of young soccer players, community members, representatives of the soccer federation, supportive musicians, members of government, parents, and educators turned out to see the film. Through the film, they learned more about the positive impact that soccer and other sports opportunities create for young women. Girls in the audience were encouraged to pursue additional athletic and educational opportunities.