LESOTHO Netball Association (LNA) and Lesotho National Council of Women (LNCW) have joined forces in the fight against teenage pregnancies, child marriages and HIV and AIDS.
The two bodies hosted a two-day netball tournament at Ratjomose courts last weekend. The platform was used to sensitise players, administrators and the public about the dangers of teenage pregnancies, child marriages and HIV and AIDS.
LNCW programmes director, Tšeole Kojana, told the Lesotho Times this week that the initiative was financed by Her Voice Fund, an international initiative created to support the meaningful engagement of adolescent girls, young women and community-based organisations in different countries.
“We are working with Her Voice Fund in their efforts to end teenage pregnancy, child marriages as well as HIV and AIDS,” Kojane said.
He said the collaboration was necessitated by the realisation that sport had the capacity to bring large groups of people together.
“We approached the LNA to create partnership with organisations that have girls and women aged between 13 and 24 years.
“During the tournament, we had slots in between games where we engaged the players, spectators and officials and discussed issues surrounding teenage pregnancies and child marriages and how they contribute to the rise of HIV and AIDS. We also empowered women with communication and business development skills.”
They are now looking forward to working with other sports federations on similar initiatives.
LNA president, ‘Mamotšabi Lekhabunyane, exhorted the LNCW for pushing an important agenda.
“We were happy that they approached by the LNCW. They are doing a good job and we are ready to continue contributing.
“I hope the collaboration will be lengthy because sport always advocate against gender-based violence, child marriages as well teenage pregnancy,” Lekhabunyane said.
She said the tournament also came at right time when teams were preparing for the beginning of the 2022 National Netball League next month. The event therefore helped the teams prepare for the league.
Twelve teams participated in the tournament and Leqele Queens were crowned champions in ladies senior category while the junior category was won by First Number. Prince won the males senior category.