Five minutes on Thursday morning
The meetings that we used to organize for teachers in preparation for our MTG school tournaments used to be challenging for our girls. We encouraged them to take up roles during those meetings such as present an introduction about MTG, explain the tournament rules and facilitate the process of making the fixtures. We always had to prepare it well and senior staff had to be ready to assist the girls. A few years ago we started to combine the meetings with coaching sessions for the teachers. Our coaches train the teachers in football coaching.
When you’re busy with all those things like we are in some of these hectic MTG periods (monthly report, budget, those deadlines and meetings) we sometimes don’t realize how much the girls have learned and how much has changed. The day before a teachers meeting we divide the roles and responsibilities, plan for the training and go to the meeting. As football coordinator I’m one of the team. I don’t take a leading role, but have my own responsibility during the day. We are relaxed at the day of the meeting. Together we carry chairs and buckets of water to the football field. The girls make fun of me when I take the initiative to clean the toilet in the football field that accidentally has been left open and apparently has been used by the whole community of Mnarani. When the teachers arrive every girl concentrates herself on her responsibility.
After I finish my activity I take the opportunity to go back to those reports. On my way back Sarah Forde approaches me. Standing in the back door of the office we look at the football field where the girls are coaching teachers. Balls roll, people are running and laughing. The girls encourage the male coaches in their drills. Sarah thinks she is sentimental, but it brings me back to the situation the way it is. Our girls are so confident that they lead meetings and train teachers! And the teachers accept the girls as football authorities. Sometimes someone needs to stop you to make you see what MTG has achieved and how it has changed and is changing girls’ lives. Even if this moment is just five minutes on a Thursday morning in the doorpost. These five minutes give us energy for all those other minutes in a year.