Last month, the Jordanian U15 Women's National Soccer Team came to the US to train and engage in American culture. Some Dragonwing soccer girls here in North Carolina were among those fortunate enough to be able to scrimmage with the team, share a meal, and get to know a bit about the similarities and differences between their lives as teen girl athletes. Former USWNT member and Olympic gold medalist, Cindy Parlow Cone, was one of the girls' soccer coaches who met with the Jordanian girls' team. A spokesperson for Dragonwing girlgear and ambassador for Goals for Girls, an international nonprofit that helps girls worldwide through cultural exchange and soccer, Parlow Cone noted the power of sports "diplomacy":
Every time…I'm a sports envoy to another country, it just reiterates how much power…this sport of soccer hasI can say quite confidently that this experience has changed my daughter's life -- and those of all the girls on the field that chilly December evening. To meet and interact, both casually and on the soccer field, with girls from another country, opened their eyes to the similarities and differences they experience as teen girls.
. It's amazing how this game can bring so many people together.
Despite language differences, they communicated perfectly in their shared "language" of soccer, where each girl knew what to do and how to play.They relished the competition and joy of the sport! Most of the girls are now connected via social media and sharing parts of their daily lives -- tweets, photos, and updates -- with their new friends across the globe. The members of the U15 team will be the first team to represent Jordan when it hosts the 2016 FIFA U17 Women's World Cup in 2016. The Jordanian team's visit was part of the US State Department's Empowering Women and Girls Through Sports Initiative and the University of Tennessee Center for Sport, Peace and Society.
A sports bra can mean the difference between a girl sitting on the sidelines and being able to play. Without the proper coverage, fit, and support of a sports bra, girls are often too self-conscious or uncomfortable being physically active, so they miss out on the many life- and skill-building benefits – and fun – that sports and athletic activity convey. As a parent, I know that a great sports bra can help give my daughter the opportunity to play her best. This is especially true for girls in the developing world. That’s why we’ve partnered with our good friends at Goals for Girls to bring sports bras to teen girls in India. Goals for Girls connects girls from different countries and backgrounds with their peers around the world to address social and health challenges through cultural exchange, service, and soccer. Earlier this year, I saw the power of these exchanges when the U15 Women's National Soccer Team from Jordan visited North Carolina.
“Sports bras are our most-needed item," says Cindy Parlow Cone, soccer superstar, coach, and Dragonwing spokesperson. As part of Goals for Girls, she's leading a team of US teen girl soccer players to India in January for a ten-day cultural exchange, including lots of soccer playing.We're hoping to send Cindy and the US Goals for Girls delegation to India with a suitcase full of sports bras, generously donated by the Dragonwing girlgear community.
To help, please donate a clean, gently-used sports bra (any size, brand, or color) to: Goals for Girls/Dragonwing 510 Meadowmont Village Circle, #188 Chapel Hill, NC 27517Include your name and email address in the package with the donated bra(s). As a token of our thanks, we'll send you a promo code good for $5 off your next Dragonwing purchase. Thank you for helping empower girls in sports & in life!