Goroka women experience joys of football

GOROKA (EHP)- A successful FIFA Women's Festival has brought the joy of football to a wider audience in Goroka a town in Papua New Guinea's Eastern Highlands Province.

With the goal of promoting the women's game in the Highlands Region, the festival brought women and girls of varying ages together to learn skills and participate in activities in a fun, relaxed environment.

Papua New Guinea Football Association (PNGFA) women's development officer Frederica Sakette says the festival is a chance to promote football as a safe game for women to participate in.

"Women's football in PNG has never been as popular as the men's competition despite being so successful on the international scene," Sakette says.

"The national women's team is currently the top regional side behind New Zealand. They have won three consecutive gold medals in the last three Pacific Games, however it is not well supported."

Sakette says the PNGFA has struggled to promote the womens game alone so having FIFA support in providing events like the festival is a positive step.

"With this festival we anticipate that women will be attracted and come together to share ideas and ways to raise the profile of the womens national team and hence encourage more girls to take up football as their preferred sport. Perhaps it will also encourage women into technical or managerial roles in the game."

The festival was held from 10am to 2pm with close to 200 participants getting involved. [BoxScoreNews]
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