This week saw a hugely successful Global Goals World Cup tournament end in victory for eight Kenyan girls as they battled it out in the five-a-side street soccer competition in Brooklyn, New York.
Former Beyond Sport Award winners Moving the Goalposts team took the trophy home along with the "Soccer-Activistas of the Year" bragging rights – which are enough to speed up change in their Kenyan town of Kilifi, and indeed the whole country.
The Global Goals World Cup is an annual activist football tournament in which female footballers participate to promote the UN’s 17 sustainable development goals, and this year took place alongside the UN General Assembly in New York City.
Now in its second year, it has seen the participation of over 40 teams from five continents.
This year's winners, whose team name is taken from the Kenyan organization that has trained them over the years, qualified for the Global Goals World Cup after winning the East African tournament in Nairobi.
All teams got to choose which UN goal they would promote through the tournament, and Moving the Goalposts chose to play for goal number five – Gender Equality. This is a social issue that is particularly important to the entire team. One of the girls, who also plays for the Kenya national football team, 25-year-old Esse Mbeyu Akida, said:
“Playing football has made me get recognition as a leader in my community and as a great African women soccer player. I have been able to access secondary and university education.
My goal is to advocate for governments in attendance to invest and support girls and young women, and organizations working to advance girls’ and women’s rights through sports.”
The next stop for the Global Goals World Cup is Bankgkok where the street football will continue on September 30.
The Global Goals organizers took the opportunity at the end of the tournament to thank all the teams and sponsors in attendance. Here are the final results of the competition.
1. The overall Trophy winner: Moving The Goal Posts
2. Action Point Winners: Sports Equality Enforcers
3. Mobilizing the Crowd winners: BIG FC
4. Creative style: Mamma's United
5. Next Generation winners: She is Worth More
6. Attitude Award: Stars & Strikers
7. Give Back winners: Global Goals NY FC