The U.S. Embassy in partnership with Ascent Soccer Academy and One Community, will send five girls to New Jersey in the United States under the Sports Visitor Program managed by the State Department’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. The five will participate in a two-week sports and leadership camp from June 29th – July 13th, 2019. The girls are Melicy Lickson (15), Memory Kulemeka (15), Ireen Khumalo (15), all from Chigoli/Ascent Soccer Academy and Brenda Nkhoma (18) and Martha Nkhoma (18) from the USAID-sponsored DREAMS project for girls.
The Sports Visitor Program uses sports to engage otherwise hard-to-reach key youth and youth influencer audiences and to support priority U.S. foreign policy goals while promoting American values both on and off the field. Programs provide participants with leadership and conflict resolution skills and a deeper understanding of the U.S. This year activities in the program include sessions on communication, public speaking and team-building, as well as attend various cultural and sporting events. Commenting on the development, US Embassy Public Affairs Officer Douglas Johnston said, “It is our aim that, when the girls return, they will be endowed with the necessary confidence to motivate and inspire other Malawian girls and women, to be empowered to stay in school, and use positive judgment in health-related decisions.