Hoop Sistas Basketball Club, was born out of the experience of the Founder who participated in the Fortune/State Department Global Mentoring Partnership program in May 2008. Under the mentorship of the President of the WNBA (Women’s National Basketball Association), Donna Orender, it was recognized that girls and young women could be empowered physically, socially politically and even career wise by playing basketball through sports and fitness in general. Sports and fitness empowers young women particularly by contributing to their strength, self-esteem and self-confidence.
Hoop Sistas Basketball Club, is a mentoring programme, which seeks to build these character attributes in young Ghanaian women through sports.
Salamatu Alhassan A physical education instructor and coach at Reverend John Tei Memorial School
Zenabu S. Akoto A physical education teacher and coach at Ghana International School
Sports – a tool for women’s empowerment
Playing sports empowers the young Ghanaian woman by contributing to their strength, self-esteem and self-confidence. Various statistics prove that women’s lives could be positively impacted through their active involvement in playing some sport.
In general, it has been found that:
Of 401 successful women in business surveyed over 80% agreed that sports helped them to succeed, made them more disciplined, made them more focused as a ‘team player’ and 70% said it helped them develop their leadership skills and contributed to their professional development. (Oppenheimer Funds Study) and as quoted in an edition of Prevention magazine, 80% of female leaders in Fortune 500 companies participated in high school athletics. Also, “more than 4 out of 5 executive businesswomen played sports growing up. The vast majority say lessons learned on the playing field have contributed to their success in business.”
Enhancing athletic opportunity for young women and girls is therefore of vital importance because of the significant physical, psychological, and sociological benefits those opportunities provide. A number of studies have recognized the role that athletic opportunities for women provide in promoting greater academic success, responsible social behaviours, and increased personal skills (Title IX: Gender Equity in College Sports: An AAUP Position Paper, June 2003).
Membership forms will be filled by all members to be signed by parents or guardians, permitting girls to join the club. The parent/guardian signature is necessary to keep track of girls who might be truant, using the club meeting days as excuses to explore personal interests which might be detrimental to their development.
Girls may only become card-bearing members after attending two months of regular consecutive training sessions, whereupon they will be presented with the HOOP SISTAS T-shirt, uniforms and the membership card. They will also be given the club rules and regulations, and code of conduct.
Register to join (Registration Form)
AWARDS & RELATED ARTICLES
The Goldman Sachs Fortune Global Women Leaders Award
From Pattie Sellers, Editor-at-Large, Fortune
Congratulations! The award judges have met, and you are one of the two recipients of the Goldman Sachs & Fortune Global Women Leaders Award. There were so many tremendous candidates - it was very difficult to choose. You will share the $50,000 award with Penelope Machipi of Zambia, one of Goldman Sachs’ 10,000 Women candidates. The two of you will travel to the Fortune Most Powerful Women Summit in San Diego to receive the award – to be presented on September 14 at the gala dinner at the opening night of the Summit. The Summit ends on Wednesday, September 16.
Link to New Power in Africa & Beyond
International Women Leaders Mentoring Partnership (video)
Each club will be expected to meet at least 4 times per month. With each of these mandatory meeting days, various programs will be drawn up after training day as below:
Week 1 - My role model/my inspiration/my mentor
This program will introduce a successful woman to the club members, who will tell them about her life and how she has made it thus far. These women are likely to be mentors from the Mentoring Walk programme
Week 2 - What I have learnt
At the end of every first week’s meeting, club members are given various magazines and periodicals to choose from and at the end of training this week, they will discuss what they read or learnt. The aim of this is to encourage them to read, explore, research and be able to express themselves confidently and to give them exposure to what exists outside their ‘small’ world. They may choose to do their ‘research’ beyond the given periodicals and rather use the internet or other resources available to them.
Week 3 - Careers
People (preferably women) in various careers will be invited to give a talk in their various fields. These will be carefully chosen in order that they are relevant to the fields of interest of club members.
Week 4 - Fitness & Health
While this meeting day will be full of training, endurance and game play, time will be set aside to give talks on health, fitness, nutrition, hygiene, personal development, self esteem etc. A doctor/health practitioner or expert in those particular fields will be invited to do these presentations. On occasion some health screening might take place – breast cancer, blood pressure, random blood sugar, BMI etc.
Should there be a fifth week, it will be dedicated solely to basketball training, skill and play.
The program might vary with different clubs since these ‘resource persons’ will be rotated from club to club.
HOOP SISTAS Basketball Club will be formed in various parts of the country with Accra as the start, particularly areas with less-privileged girls, with the aim of empowering them by
HOOP SISTAS, will be a platform to have girls and young women learn from women leaders in their community and by so doing also improve themselves. It is an effort to engage and motivate more women to aspire to become leaders politically, socially and economically while building their physical ability through regular club meetings.
These clubs are a means of promoting women’s basketball to overcome the stereotyped view that it is only men who play any sport, including basketball, and that women’s basketball is also worth watching and celebrating. Benefits of these clubs will be that these young women and girls will also be growing and developing in their various areas of interest, while showcasing basketball as a sport to be played by women.
This helps develop women professionally, socially and personally. These clubs aspire to be the avenue through which the girls can learn and play while they in themselves aspire to lead, inspire others and create changes in their lives.